As a former intern coordinator in Washington D.C., I was continually amused at what I saw: young people, barely out of high school, with 2, 3 and 4 page resumes!!!! It brought me back to my own college days. I’ll never forget the words of one of my professors who said, “The greater your credentials, the shorter your resume will be.” He was right. The more we do in life, the less we need to say. This philosophy doesn’t only apply to resumes. The wisest persons are usually those of very few words.
Mary is portrayed by the gospel writers as a person of very few words, yet she became the Mother of God. Sunday's Solemnity celebrates and honors Mary’s role as the Mother of God. Though the Church begins the new year by honoring Mary, she figures prominently throughout the liturgical year. In the United States, half of the holy days of obligation are celebrated in honor of Mary: January 1st, August 15th (Assumption), and December 8th (Mary’s Immaculate Conception). Dozens of other days, including most Saturdays in Ordinary Time, are marked to honor Mary or some aspect of her life. A devotion to Mary may have started as early as the third century. After the Church Council of Ephesus in 431, many churches were built in Mary’s name, and a number of liturgies honoring her developed. By the Middle Ages, a strong devotion to Mary was expressed in art, pilgrimages and prayer. Prayers such as the Angelus, the Hail Mary and the Memorare all emerged during this time. All of this for a woman of few words.Mary didn’t need to say a whole lot. Her “yes” said it all. This Solemnity helps us to reflect on that. May we begin this new year like Mary, by saying yes to bearing God in our actions and words, no matter how few. Amen.