MARY, TEACHER AND MOTHER OF THE CHURCH / MARIAN VIRTUES OF DOCILITY AND OBEDIENCE

In penetrating the mystery of the Word of God, Mary of Nazareth, from the moment of the Annunciation, remains the Teacher and Mother of the Church and the exemplar of every encounter with the Word by individuals or entire communities. She welcomes the Word in faith, mediates upon it, interiorizes it and lives it (cf. Lk 1:38; 2:19,51; Acts 17:11). Indeed, Mary listened to and meditated upon the Scriptures; she associated them with Jesus’ words and the events which she discovered were related to his life.
Pope calls the Virgin Mary a teacher of prayer
“In all the events of her life, from the Annunciation through the Cross to Pentecost, Mary is presented by Saint Luke as a woman of recollected prayer and meditation on the mystery of God’s saving plan in Christ.”
“Let us entrust to her every moment of our own lives, and let her teach us the need for prayer, so that in loving union with her Son we may implore the outpouring of the Holy Spirit and the spread of the Gospel to all the ends of the earth.”
*Pope Benedict XVI addressed thousands of pilgrims at Saint Peter's Square, Vatican- March 14 2012
MARIAN VIRTUES OF DOCILITY AND OBEDIENCE
Mary's docility
"In her silence she speaks volumes, she tells me to listen, she tells me to meditate, she tells me to simply silently follow behind my Lord, she tells me to trust, she tells me to immerse myself in Him so that my ‘self’ no longer exists, but that He exists in me and she tells me to be watchful, ever observant. "
Docility means teachable, easy to teach, from the Latin word docilis from doc tre, meaning to teach.
Docility, according to St. Thomas Aquinas, is related to the virtue of prudence. Specifically, it is that part of prudence that allows us to acquire knowledge through the teaching of another. The Angelic Doctor points out that even the most learned people need to be docile, since no man is completely self-sufficient in matters of prudence. We all stand in great need of being taught by others.
It is easy for people to be docile when they are aware of their own desperation. If one is lost in a foreign city, let us say, it is easy to be docile to a local citizen who can give us directions. The great problem with docility, however, is that people are often unaware of their own desperation. That is, they do not know they are lost.
The perfect model for this virtue is Mary and her Son Jesus.. Mary as a child was submissive to the teachings of her parents Anne and Joachim,and at the Annunciation she completely surrendered all her will to God and she allowed herself to be docile to the promptings of the Holy Spirit that infused divine knowledge to her. St Thomas Aquinas said that Mary following the Holy Spirit received in a high decree the gift of wisdom (one of her title is "The seat of Wisdom")..in order for her to have this knowledge to understand her divine mission and God's plan for our salvation. As a mother, she had to educate her son, teaching him prayers, good manners,family relationships etc. Our Cathechism says Mary's role doesn't end at the birth of the Messiah,, it was a continuous task, involving the human formations of the young Jesus..Jesus the Son of God in His human heart obeyed and submitted Himself to the teachings of His parents.. and even learn from His father Joseph the carpentry trade. And in the public Life of Jesus as the Savior of mankind, Mary became the number one follower of her Son, allowing herself to be docile to learn more from her Son Jesus the greatest teacher that ever walked the face of the earth.
The Virtues of Obedience
Mary's example of obedience
When the Angel Gabriel announced to Mary God's great designs upon her, she, through love for obedience, would only call herself a handmaid: Behold the handmaid of the Lord. [Luke 1:38] "Yes," says St. Thomas of Villanova, "for this faithful handmaid never, in either thought or word or deed, contradicted the Most High; but entirely despoiled of her own will, she lived always and in all things obedient to that of God." She herself declared that God was pleased with her obedience, when she said, He hath regarded the humility of His handmaid, for in prompt obedience it is that the humility of a servant, properly speaking consists. St. Irenreus says that, by her obedience the Divine Mother repaired the evil done by Eve's disobedience: "As Eve, by her disobedience, caused her own death and that of the whole human race, so did the Virgin Mary, by her obedience, become the cause of her own salvation and of that of all mankind." Mary's obedience was much more perfect than that of all other Saints; since all men, on account of Original Sin, are prone to evil, and find it difficult to do good; but not so the Blessed Virgin. St. Bernardine writes, that, "Because Mary was free from Original Sin, she found no obstacle in obeying God; she was like a wheel, which was easily turned by every inspiration of the Holy Ghost." "Hence," continues the same Saint, "her only object in this world was to keep her eyes constantly fixed on God, to discover His will, and, when she had found out what He required, to perform it." Of her was said, My soul melted when He spoke. [Cant. 5:6] that is, "My soul was as metal, liquefied by the fire of love, ready to be moulded into any form, according to the Divine will."
Mary well proved how ready she was to obey in all things, in the first place, when, to please God, she obeyed even the Roman emperor, and undertook the long journey of at least seventy miles to Bethlehem, in the winter, when she was pregnant, and in such poverty that she had to give birth to her Son in a stable.
She showed equal obedience in undertaking, on the very same night on which she had notice of it from St. Joseph, the longer and more difficult journey into Egypt. Here Silveira asks why the command to fly into Egypt was given to St. Joseph rather than to the Blessed Virgin, who was to suffer the most from it; and he answers, that it was "that Mary might not be deprived of an occasion in which to perform an act of obedience, for which she was always most ready."
But above all she showed her heroic obedience when, to obey the Divine will, she offered her Son to death; and this with such constancy, as St. Anselm and St. Antoninus say, that had executioners been wanting, she would have been ready herself to have crucified Him. Hence Venerable Bede, explaining our Lord's answer to the woman spoken of in the Gospel, who exclaimed, Blessed is the womb that bore Thee ... Yea rather, blessed are they who hear the word of God and keep it, [Luke 11:27] says that Mary was indeed blessed in becoming the Mother of God, but that she was much more so in always loving and obeying the Divine will.
Our own sweet Queen, then, and Mother, intercede with Jesus for us; by the merit of thine obedience obtain that we may be faithful in obeying His will and the commands of our spiritual Fathers. Amen.
source: Saint Tomas Aquinas and St. Alphosus Ligouri writings
*Photo-"Christ and His Mother Studying the Scripture"

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