Blessed Mary of the Incarnation

Today Holy Mother Church remembers Blessed Mary of the Incarnation.

Though she, Barbara Acarie, had oftentimes felt a call to the religious life, she discerned into marriage for the first chapter of her adult life, largely because she felt so completely unworthy to be a bride of Christ.

She said: “If I am unworthy through my sins to be the bride of Christ, I can at least be his servant.”

And so she served God through marriage and had six children, three of whom became nuns and one of whom became a priest.

When her husband died, though, she entered the convent and took the name “Mary of the Incarnation.”

I love the prayer she uttered as she lay on her death bed. I hope I remember to pray it when that time comes for me. She prayed: “Lord, forgive me for the bad example that I have set.”

While some may call her over scrupulous (she was quite a woman, and did an incredible amount of good for the Church, yet categorized herself as a terrible sinner), I think it good to see an example of a person who realized (1) what the faith demanded of her, and (2) how much she fell short.

The fact that she made these two realizations is what makes her a pretty good example, in my opinion.

We all fall short, and most, I dare say, more than Mary of the Incarnation.

Her patronage: against poverty, impoverishment, loss of parents, parents separated from children, poverty, widows

Mary of the Incarnation: Pray for us!