Friday, June 18, 2010

Our Lady of Ephesus

My brother went on a pilgrimage to Ephesus last May and came back with this gift of a tapestry of Our Lady of Ephesus.  I just love this picture of Mary!  She reminds me so much in this picture of Our Lady of Mount Carmel.  I always feel so happy everytime I consider that I was born on the feast of the Dedication of the Basilica of Saint Mary Major on August 5th.  The basilica was erected to honor the Motherhood of Mary which was debated and solidified in the Council of Ephesus in 431.  Among the many attributes of Mary, her titles of Mother of God and Virgo Fidelis, always appealed most to me. There is such tenderness in this picture: Mary pointing us to her Son and the Child Jesus pointing us to his mother.  Such bond of mutual love.  In the picture of 'La bruna" found below is the original painting which later became known as Our Lady of Mount Carmel.

the Child Jesus is lovingly holding the face of his Mother and pressing his face to hers.  Such testament of love for a woman who loved Him to the end.  Mary was traditionally believed to accompany St. John the Apostle to Ephesus after Jesus ascended to heaven.  In Ephesus, Mary spent her life in silence and prayer until the time when she in her turn joined Jesus as depicted in her "Dormition" or falling asleep.  Mary's House was mentioned by the visionary Venerable Anne Catherine Emmerich in her book and later discovered in an excavation.
Mary of Ephesus is a testament of the earthly presence of our Lady and the joy awaiting us in heaven when we get to see her, face to face!

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