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August 16, 2010

Her stillness enfolds us,

whether we meet her glance from the tumult

or stop with her in silence,

whether we find ourselves in light or in shadow.

We rise in a new today

to be recreated

side by side with this woman of all women

this limpid mirror of grace,

whose presence is so friendly,

so kind,

so much at peace with our lowliness.

We, too, are at peace with our lowliness.

There is a saying that “Behind every great man is a great woman.”

And another: “The hand that rocks the cradle rules the world.”

Indeed. Womanhood and its specific fulfillment in motherhood can be very powerful. But the fact is that motherhood is made of small things. It is not loud; it is not flashy.

South Korea has recently come to the conclusion that their birth rate is dangerously low, and hired Planned Parenthood to reverse the trend: they pushed the birthrate one way; now push it the other.

Not so easy. Advertizing self-indulgence is one thing; advertizing motherhood is another. It actually requires an interior life. It’s immensely rewarding, but it has vastly uncomfortable moments, and it is the beautiful presence of the Lord, of his mother, and of our fellowship of mothers, as well as the faces of sleeping children, that help us get through those times and move forward.

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