Emma Magnuson ’92 M.A.

Mothers, at their best, show us how to live lives of love by giving us their love. This reading made me think that mothers are just like Christ in this way. Jesus says, “As the Father loves me, so I also love you… love one another as I love you.” On this Mother’s Day, I hope that I might love others as my mother has loved me, knowing that the source of her strength and love is her faith in God.

Love is something that is passed down from generation to generation in our families. There is a wall hanging that I once received as a gift which reads: “Our family is a circle of strength and love, with every birth and every union, the circle will grow, every joy shared adds more love, every crisis faced together makes the circle stronger.” At first, I thought the text was a bit clichéd and I am not usually one to display these sorts of inspirational sayings. But, the more I thought about it, the more the saying resonated with me. The piece found a place of honor in a half bath on the first floor of my home and I am surprised at how often people comment on how much they appreciate these words.

I suppose the one thing that I would add to this saying is that the circle of love we experience in our families is an open circle, not a closed one. The love that grows within our families is always directed both inward and outward. This is certainly something that I learned from my mother and I hope I am teaching to my children, as well. I think this is the heart of today’s gospel. Jesus teaches us how love moves and grows by using the example of the love between himself and the Father, a fundamentally familial metaphor, but he goes on to show that the circle of Christian love embraces all people. I hope that this Mother’s Day can inspire us to live out Jesus’ command: “Love one another.”