08 September is the Feast of the Maria Bambinella (Child Mary) also known as the Feast of the Nativity of Mary, or Birth of the Virgin Mary.
St Annibale had a devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary under the title Bambinella or the Child Mary. One of the testimonies given for the cause of his canonization affirmed that the Child Mary was the poetry of his heart. The Founder himself deemed it necessary to his sons and daughters – the Rogationists and the Daughters of Divine Zeal to have a solemn celebration of the feast by preparing a triduum, procession, sermons and vigil on the eve. It was a one of St Annibale’s dearest forms of piety as he was madly in love with the Bambinella. So much so that at the end of this saint’s earthly life, the Child Mary assured him of her love and protection.*
Mary’s life teaches us many things. She is our guide, a star that shines on our path of our faith journey. Her life at the very start to the end is always meant for God. She lives and follows God’s will. Every moment of her journey forms her whole being as she is accompanied by God, day by day. Because she always prays to Him, she is always in communion with Him, everything she does is for God and that keeps her relationship so close to Him. Her faith is nourished and it grows. She has been shaken and tested with different challenges in life – pains, difficulties and contradictions – but she never falls down or becomes discouraged, rather God gives her more strength to face these with such dignity. Assured of God’s love is her consolation that God will never abandon her and she has hope and trusts Him in everything.
The moment that Jesus comes to her life is her great joy, it never compares to any other thing. Her joy with Jesus is not the end but is the start of her journey of life towards hope, sacrifice, and love in following His Son. She is always beside Jesus, accompanying Him in His passion, His death and to complete the experience of His Son’s glorious resurrection. Her life evangelizes us on how she deals with life with such love in her heart. She is part of that Good News that leads us to the fullness of life which awaits us at the end.
Mary you will always be the star shining in our lives. You guide us in our daily journey as we follow your Son, Jesus. Continue to protect and guide us onto the right path that we are travelling now. I pray for all women that we may, like you, imitate those virtues that help us to reach your heavenly home. Teach us to live this life with Christ, to love as we serve Him in our brothers and sisters who feel the least in our world and who are in most need.