We pray for all young people, called to live life to the fullest; may they see in Mary’s life the way to listen, the depth of discernment, the courage that faith generates, and the dedication to service.
Our Church has been blessed with many young saints. And even more so today, young people have contemporary men and women from whom they can take inspiration like the tennis playing Bl. Chiara Luce Badano or the internet savvy Bl. Carlo Acutis. Young saints of old also inspire like St. Dominic Savio or St. Maria Goretti. In this month’s intention, our Holy Father invites us to consider the youthful witness of Mary, who as a teenage girl, accepted God’s plan and mission for her life as Mother of God. When she received the visit from the Archangel Gabriel, she did not hesitate to say “fiat” or “let it be done to me.”
Mary lived her life to the fullest because she lived her life in conformity to the will of God. She only wanted what God wanted for her life. The fullness of Mary’s life resulted from making her home with God himself who became incarnate in the person of Jesus Christ.
Mary’s life is one worthy of imitation for all Christian believers and especially for young people. There is a lot of noise in the world today which demands the attention of young people often distracting them from listening to God. Mary listened to the angel, and she listened to the words and teachings of Jesus. She listened deep within her heart which compelled her to visit her cousin Elizabeth. Mary teaches us to listen for the quiet whisper of God in our hearts. Attentive listening to God will enable a deeper discernment as young people hear the call to priesthood, consecrated life, or to marriage.
The courageous Mary of Nazareth asked her son at Cana to aid a couple as they celebrated their marriage. Mary’s courage ushered in the Lord’s hour and His ministry but also generated faith among the disciples as St. John tells us “his disciples began to believe in him”: (John 2:11). As the mother of God and the mother of all believers, Mary dedicates her life in service of humanity by her prayers of intercession and mediation of grace.
By Mary’s prayers, may all young people live their life to the fullest in conformity to God’s will, listening and discerning, believing and serving.
Fr. Edward Looney
Fr. Edward Looney is a priest of the Diocese of Green Bay, a Marian theologian, host of the podcast How They Love Mary, and author of several books. He currently serves as vice-president of the Mariological Society of America.