March 17.   Elizabeth spoke up for the first time, on her favourite subject, motherhood.  “I’m sure everyone will agree that when you think of our world, as a family of families, all kinds of motherhood examples come to mind.  Even just with human mothers we have loving, nurturing and nasty, neglectful mothers, although I do believe that mothers do have an inborn mothering gene.  You see it in women in their late 30s suddenly getting broody.  Almost every single species in the human and animal kingdom has that quality, to bear and care for offspring, often at considerable cost.   All the beautiful wildlife TV series show incredible examples, which include mothering someone else’s baby. Some insects, bees and white ants have unusual mothering capacities, centering on a queen who rules the colony.

Can plants have anything like that instinct to reproduce? Reproduce yes, but nurturing probably is beyond their capability.   For me, this reproductive aspect of creation should get a lot more emphasis.  I also haven’t come across anything in particular that St Francis had to say about mothering. I wonder why?“ “That is not really fair,” David responded,  “We know that he had a great love for Mary and devotion to Mary, the mother of Jesus.”

Scripture.Can a woman forget her sucking child, that she should have no compassion on the son of her womb?  Even if these forget yet I will not forget you.” Is 49:8-18. This quotation presents a feminine side of God which is often the main focus when it is used. 

Pope Francis:  Keep happy and let nothing rob you of the interior joy of motherhood.  Your child deserves your happiness.  Don’t let fears, worries, other people’s comments or problems lessen your joy at being God’s means of bringing a new life to the world. AL 171. For many Christians this journey of fraternity also has a Mother, whose name is Mary.  Having received this universal motherhood at the foot of the cross she cares not only for Jesus but also for the rest of her children.  In the power of the risen Lord, she wants to give birth to a new world, where all of us are brothers and sisters and where there is room for all those whom our societies discard.   FT 278. 

In calling to mind St Francis we realise that a healthy relationship with creation is one dimension of overall personal conversion, which entails the recognition of our errors, sins, faults, and failures and leads to heartfelt repentance and desire to change.   LS 218            

Reflect, share, act, pray.  How can we reflect on the issue of motherhood? Do we need to repent?