Sisters of St. Francis of the Holy Cross in Green Bay, WI
Reflection for May 14, 2023

Reflection for May 14, 2023

God's abiding presence

The ideals of motherhood make tangible our Creator's love for us 

by Sister Jane Riha

Sunday's Gospel (John 14:15-21) fits beautifully with the celebration of Mother’s Day.

Reflecting on the reading for this Sunday, I was mindful of how applicable the readings are to mothers, to our own mothers, and to mothers separated from their children. Reading the Scriptures in terms of the global reality reminds us that for all the turmoil, war, and distress in the world, God’s abiding presence is with us. “And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate to be with you always ...”

“I will not leave you orphans; I will come to you” (John 14:18). As I reflected on this verse, the orphans of war and poverty came to my mind’s eye. Jesus told his disciples, as he tells us today, God is with us as a loving Advocate. I reflected on mothers separated from their children due to the travesty of war; I thought of children refugees who are separated from their mothers.

God’s love is unconditional. “And whoever loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him/her and reveal myself to him/her” (John 14:21). For each of us, and today especially for mothers, we pray to the Holy Spirit for a deeper realization of God’s indwelling love which supports each of us in the good times and the hard times.

God’s grace and loving presence sustains us when we are searching for answers and perhaps feel like an orphan. Sunday is a day for gratitude, for love, and for cherishing the gift of life given to us by our mothers and fathers.


Diann Wimmer
05/12/2023 11:02 am

Thank you, Sr. Jane, for the great reminder that mothers in many situations care for their children. This gives me an opportunity to recall the attentive guidance of my mother throughout my life. How wonderful it is to give thanks and to know that the presence of God is with us always. Perhaps God sends mothers to reveal his love and care.

05/12/2023 11:03 am

Thank you, Sister Jane, for this very beautiful and meaningful remembrance of the many kinds of mothers present in out world today and the heart-breaking situations so many mothers are facing, including: "mothers separated from their children, orphans of war and poverty, children refugees." I think, too, of mothers who have lost a child -- of any age -- to rampages of gun violence, all forms of violence, and to drug addiction.

And in your prayer, Jane, I hear, too, what another religious community of Sisters feels in their hearts this Mother's Day, 2023. The following is from the Congregation of St. Joseph, received in my email just yesterday.


God we pray:

for new mothers,

coming to terms with new responsibility;

for expectant mothers,

wondering and waiting;

for those who are tired,

stressed or depressed;

for those who struggle to balance

the tasks of work and family;

for those who are unable

to feed their children due to poverty;

for those whose children have physical, mental or emotional disabilities;

for those who have children

they do not want;

for those who raise children on their own;

for those who have lost a child;

for those who care for the children of others;

for those whose children have left home;

and for those whose desire to be a mother has not been fulfilled.

Bless all mothers,

that their love may be deep and tender,

and that they may lead their children

to know and do what is good,

living not for themselves alone,

but for God and for others.


Bobbie Reinhart
05/12/2023 2:20 pm

My mother and her 4 siblings were put in an orphanage in the 1920’s when their parents divorced. She made sure that my sister and I had everything that she never had!! Sad that she never went to church, but she made sure that my sister and I were always dressed beautifully when my dad took us to church!

05/13/2023 8:25 pm

It is so hard every Mother’s Day having lost my Mom so many years ago. I know God has been good to her and me and my family also for all these years. I have received much love and guidance from my dear friends, the Sisters of St. Francis. May they all be blessed with a “Happy Mother’s Day “.

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