Sunday, May 13, 2012

Thanks, Moms

Before all else on this Mother's Day, the liturgical blessing for all the Moms among us....
Loving God, as a mother gives life and nourishment to her children, so you watch over your Church.

Bless these women, that they may be strengthened as Christian mothers. Let the example of their faith and love shine forth.

Grant that we, their sons and daughters, may honor them always with a spirit of profound respect.
Grant this through Christ our Lord.

Whether yours is motherhood in the literal sense or -- as is the case for many here -- bringing a mother’s gifts to others through your lives and work, Lord knows there's no greater blessing in this life than a mother's love... and today and always, no words could ever say enough thanks for all you do, give and are.

Moms of every stripe, may you know every good thing forever... and on this Sunday, here’s hoping you’re able to take it easy for a change.

* * *
This Mother's Day likewise brings the debut of a new text in the Stateside church -- the Blessing of a Child in the Womb.

Approved by the US bishops last November, its recognitio from Rome fittingly granted on Annunciation Day, the text was published last week in English and Spanish with an eye to this Sunday's liturgies.

Lest anyone hasn't yet seen -- and could perhaps use -- it, here, the relevant ritual text in its group form:
God, author of all life,
bless, we pray, these unborn children; give them constant protection
and grant them a healthy birth
that is the sign of our rebirth one day into the eternal rejoicing of heaven.

Lord, who have brought to these women the wondrous joy of motherhood,
grant them comfort in all anxiety
and make them determined
to lead their children along the ways of salvation.

[For the fathers: Lord of the ages,
who have singled out these men
to know the grace and pride of fatherhood, grant them courage in this new responsibility, and make them examples of justice and truth for
these children.]

[For the family: Lord, endow these families
with sincere and enduring love
as they prepare to welcome these children into
their midst.]

Lord, you have put into the hearts of all men and women of good will
a great awe and wonder at the gift of new life;
fill this (parish) community
with faithfulness to the teachings of the Gospel and new resolve to share
in the spiritual formation of these children in Christ our Savior,
who lives and reigns for ever and ever.

R. Amen.