Mons Yennock's Mother's day Homily

May 12, 2015

 

MOTHER’S DAY 2015

I THINK THAT EVERYBODY IN THE COUNTRY WHO WAS WATCHING THE BALTIMORE RIOT SAW TOYA GRAHAM THE FRANTIC MOTHER WHO RAN AFTER HER SIXTEEN YEAR OLD SON TO KEEP HIM OUT OF HARM’S WAY. AT ONE POINT SHE SAID: “IS HE THE PERFECT BOY? NO, HE’S NOT! BUT HE’S MINE. I’M JUST GRATEFUL THAT I WAS ABLE TO GET HIM HOME, AND WE ACTUALLY SIT BACK AND WATCHED THE NEWS AND EVERYTHING."

WHEN I SAW THAT SCENE ON TELEVISION I COULDN’T HELP BUT THINK OF A TRUE STORY THAT WAS WRITTEN ON MOTHER’S DAY BY A YOUNG PRISONER WHO WAS AWAITING EXECUTION IN SAN QUENTON PRISON:

A CRIME WAS COMMITTED AND THERE WAS AN ARREST. AND A BOY WAS THROWN INTO A CELL. THE CRIME WAS GREAT. THE BOY WAS YOUNG. AND THE CELL WAS DARK. LIFE SEEMED AT AN END AND HELL BECAME A LIVING THING.

THEN ONE DAY AS THE BOY SAT WEEPING IN HIS CELL, HE LOOKED UP TO SEE HIS MOTHER. SHE WAS SMILING. SHE OPENED HER ARMS AND SAID ‘MY BOY DID YOU THINK I WOULD NOT COME TO YOU? AND SUDDENLY THE BOY FORGOT HIS TERROR AND FOUND COMFORT IN THE MAGIC CIRCLE OF HIS MOTHER’S ARMS.

ON THE NIGHT BEFORE HE DIED JESUS SAID TO HIS DISCIPLES: MY CHILDREN I GIVE YOU A NEW COMMANDMENT—LOVE ONE ANOTHER AS I HAVE LOVED YOU.

EVERY MOTHER WHO LOVES HER CHILD WITH ENDLESS COMPASSION AND FORGIVENESS EXEMPLIFIES THE LOVE OF JESUS CHRIST. EVERY MOTHER WHO MAKES DAILY SACRIFICES FOR HER CHILD EXEMPLIFIES THE SACRIFICIAL LOVE OF CHRIST. NO GREATER LOVE HAS ANY MAN THAN HE LAY DOWN HIS LIFE FOR HIS FRIEND.

THIS WEEKEND WE CELEBRATE MOTHER’S DAY. HEROIC MOTHERLY LOVE INSPIRES US TO LIVE THE GENUINE CHRISTIAN LOVE THAT JESUS CALLS US TO LIVE IN TODAY’S GOSPEL.

IN THIS COUNTRY, WE CONFER DEGREES ON MORE PEOPLE THAN ANY COUNTRY IN THE WORLD. ON THE OTHER HAND, OUR PRISON POPULATION IS HIGHER THAN ANY COUNTRY IN THE WORLD. SOMEHOW WE ARE DOING A GOOD JOB IN TEACHING PEOPLE HOW TO MAKE A LIVING, BUT WE ARE NOT DOING A GOOD JOB IN TEACHING THEM HOW TO LIVE.

MOTHER’S DO NOT HAVE PHD’S IN THE ART OF CIVILIZING THE WORLD. THEY DO NOT GO TO THE UNIVERSITIES TO STUDY HOW TO TEACH PEOPLE HOW TO LIVE. YET THEY SUPERVISE ONE OF THE MOST IMPORTANT UNIVERSITIES IN OUR COUNTRY. I AM TALKING ABOUT THE HOME-- THE UNIVERSITY OF LIFE AND LOVE.

WITHOUT THE UNIVERSITY OF LIFE AND LOVE, THE OTHER UNIVERSITIES WOULD FAIL MISERABLY.

WITH YOUR PERMISSION I WOULD LIKE TO READ A STORY ABOUT A MOTHER’S LOVE AND GUIDANCE IN THE UNIVERSITY OF LIFE AND LOVE.

 

AS SHE SET HER FOOT ON THE PATH OF LIFE, A YOUNG MOTHER ASKED HER ANGEL: IS IT THE LONG WAY? AND THE ANGEL SAID:

"YES, AND THE WAY IS HARD, AND YOU WILL BE OLD BEFORE YOU REACH THE END OF IT. BUT THE END WILL BE BETTER THAN THE BEGINNING."

THE YOUNG MOTHER WAS HAPPY, AND SHE WOULD NOT BELIEVE THAT ANYTHING COULD BE BETTER THAN THESE YEARS. SO SHE PLAYED WITH HER CHILDREN, SHE FED THEM AND BATHED THEM, TAUGHT THEM HOW TO TIE THEIR SHOES AND RIDE A BIKE, AND REMINDED THEM TO FEED THE DOG AND DO THEIR HOMEWORK AND BRUSH THEIR TEETH. THE SUN SHONE ON THEM AND THE YOUNG MOTHER CRIED,

"NOTHING WILL EVER BE LOVELIER THAN THIS."

THEN THE NIGHTS CAME, AND THE STORMS, AND THE PATH WAS SOMETIMES DARK, AND THE CHILDREN SHOOK WITH FEAR AND COLD, AND THE MOTHER DREW THEM CLOSE AND COVERED THEM WITH HER ARMS. THE CHILDREN SAID,

"MOTHER, WE ARE NOT AFRAID, FOR YOU ARE NEAR, AND NO HARM CAN COME."

AND THE MORNING CAME, AND THERE WAS A HILL AHEAD, AND THE CHILDREN CLIMBED AND GREW WEARY, AND THE MOTHER WAS WEARY. BUT AT ALL TIMES SHE SAID TO THE CHILDREN,

"A LITTLE PATIENCE AND WE ARE THERE."

SO THE CHILDREN CLIMBED AND AS THEY CLIMBED THEY LEARNED TO WEATHER THE STORMS. AND WITH THIS, SHE GAVE THEM STRENGTH TO FACE THE WORLD. YEAR AFTER YEAR SHE SHOWED THEM COMPASSION, UNDERSTANDING, HOPE, BUT MOST OF ALL UNCONDITIONAL LOVE. AND WHEN THEY REACHED THE TOP THEY SAID,

"MOTHER, WE COULD NOT HAVE DONE IT WITHOUT YOU."

THE DAYS WENT ON, AND THE WEEKS AND THE MONTHS AND THE YEARS. THE MOTHER GREW OLD AND SHE BECAME LITTLE AND BENT. BUT HER CHILDREN WERE TALL AND STRONG, AND WALKED WITH COURAGE. AND THE MOTHER, WHEN SHE LAY DOWN AT NIGHT, LOOKED UP AT THE STARS AND SAID:

"THIS IS A BETTER DAY THAN THE LAST, FOR MY CHILDREN HAVE LEARNED SO MUCH AND ARE NOW PASSING THESE TRAITS ON TO THEIR CHILDREN."

AND WHEN THE WAY BECAME ROUGH FOR HER, THEY LIFTED HER, AND GAVE HER THEIR STRENGTH, JUST AS SHE HAD GIVEN THEM HERS. ONE DAY THEY CAME TO A HILL, AND BEYOND THE HILL THEY COULD SEE A SHINING ROAD AND GOLDEN GATES FLUNG WIDE. AND MOTHER SAID,

"I HAVE REACHED THE END OF MY JOURNEY. AND NOW I KNOW THE END IS BETTER THAN THE BEGINNING, FOR MY CHILDREN CAN WALK WITH DIGNITY AND PRIDE, WITH THEIR HEADS HELD HIGH, AND SO CAN THEIR CHILDREN AFTER THEM." AND THE CHILDREN SAID,

"YOU WILL ALWAYS WALK WITH US, MOTHER, EVEN WHEN YOU HAVE GONE THROUGH THE GATES."

AND THEY STOOD AND WATCHED HER AS SHE WENT ON ALONE, AND THE GATES CLOSED AFTER HER. AND THEY SAID,

"WE CANNOT SEE HER, BUT SHE IS WITH US STILL." A MOTHER IS MORE THAN A MEMORY. SHE IS A LIVING PRESENCE. YOUR MOTHER IS ALWAYS WITH YOU. SHE'S THE WHISPER OF THE LEAVES AS YOU WALK DOWN THE STREET, SHE'S THE SMELL OF CERTAIN FOODS YOU REMEMBER, FLOWERS YOU PICK AND PERFUME THAT SHE WORE, SHE'S THE COOL HAND ON YOUR BROW WHEN YOU'RE NOT FEELING WELL, SHE'S YOUR BREATH IN THE AIR ON A COLD WINTERS DAY.

SHE IS THE SOUND OF THE RAIN THAT LULLS YOU TO SLEEP, THE COLORS OF A RAINBOW, SHE IS YOUR BIRTHDAY MORNING. YOUR MOTHER LIVES INSIDE YOUR LAUGHTER. AND SHE'S CRYSTALLIZED IN EVERY TEAR DROP.

A MOTHER SHOWS THROUGH IN EVERY EMOTION - HAPPINESS, SADNESS, FEAR, JEALOUSY, LOVE, HATE, ANGER, HELPLESSNESS, EXCITEMENT, JOY, SORROW - AND ALL THE WHILE HOPING AND PRAYING YOU WILL ONLY KNOW THE GOOD FEELINGS IN LIFE.

SHE'S THE PLACE YOU CAME FROM, YOUR FIRST HOME, AND SHE'S THE MAP YOU FOLLOW WITH EVERY STEP YOU TAKE. SHE'S YOUR FIRST LOVE, YOUR FIRST FRIEND, EVEN YOUR FIRST ENEMY, BUT NOTHING ON EARTH CAN SEPARATE YOU. NOT TIME, NOT SPACE - NOT EVEN DEATH! (Good Housekeeping Magazine in 1933 by Temple Bailey)

 

FOR EVERY SON WHO CRUCIFIES HIMSELF ON PILLARS OF HATE, WEAKNESS AND GREED THERE AT THE FOOT OF THE CROSS YOU WILL FIND THE MOTHER. YOUR MOTHER AND MINE. GOD BLESS THEM, HERE AND BEYOND. THEY HAVE KNOWN SO MUCH PAIN.