Are you ready for another conundrum of a question? I don't have answers to it, but there's no harm in musing about where possible answers might be found.
Among all of the prophetic strands coming from our Christian brothers and sisters about an unprecedented worldwide revival there is strangely no mention of the Mother of Jesus. Contrast this with the promise from Fatima that we have been waiting 100 years to see fulfilled: "In the end my Immaculate Heart will triumph".
I can't see how one can happen without the other, and yet at the same time I can't see how it could happen together - hence the conundrum.
Triumph is all about victory, and in this case victory over evil, sin and the prevailing culture of death. We won’t see the kingdom of God on earth without such a triumph. On the other hand, triumph doesn't come without battle.
Where are the battle fields? There's the battle for each individual heart and mind and soul; the battle for families, communities, tribes, cities and nations, and there's the battles in the fields of politics, entertainment, sport, government, and culture.
Each battle has two components, just like when Israel went out to fight the enemy at Rephidim (Exodus 17-18), there was the battle in the natural with swords, fists, blood and gore and there was the battle in the supernatural with the advantage going to Israel as long as Moses kept his arms raised in prayer.
The battle we face has the same two components, and it cannot be won unless both are being fought in unison. For example in the field of entertainment we need Holy Spirit filled writers, directors, producers and actors to get the movies capable of converting hearts onto the big screen, but at the same time we need the prayer warriors obtaining the blessings of God on the enterprise, protecting it from the assaults of the enemy and winning the grace for hearts to be open to receive the gift of conversion.
Where does the Mother of Jesus fit in all this?
We have the ancient promises in Genesis about the woman crushing the head of the serpent, and the ancient prophecy in Luke about how all generations will call her blessed because the Almighty has done great things for her, and then there's the bit in the Book of Revelation about the powers of evil making war on the children of the woman clothed with the Sun.
We have the Old Testament types of Ruth, Esther, Deborah, Judith and Jael to give us clues. Each of these women was strong in faith and strong in prayer. Of them all, Mary the Mother of Jesus surpasses them all in faith and prayer. Her greatest valour was remaining at the foot of the Cross consenting for her heart to be crucified along with her Son's body. Her tears and sighs at the foot of the Cross are powerful with the heart of God.
In the New Testament we see St Paul talking about Jesus as the head of the Church and about how baptism makes us members of His body, with each member having a specific role and function that benefits the body as a whole. Some will function as arms caring for the sick, some will function as legs spreading the Good News, those called to strengthen others through teaching function as bones, those called to a ministry of suffering and reparation function as liver and kidneys.
The body cannot function without Jesus the head of the Church. Every part is aligned on Him and directed by Him. What connects the head to the body? The neck. That is an analogy of the role of Mary, Mother of Jesus. She is the closest to her Son and she co-operates perfectly with His holy Will. The neck unifies the body under Jesus the head. As a mother she loves each and every person redeemed by the blood of her Son, always seeking the best for each one as she intercedes before God's throne.
The body cannot function in unity without Mary bringing all the members together and uniting them in Jesus. Each dogmatic definition about Mary protects an essential truth about her Son Jesus.
Catholics have no trouble with this. They have meditated long on the Gospel scenes where Mary is present, they recognise her as the pre-eminent model of all the Church is called to be and they know personally, individually and corporately the power of her intercession and the tenderness of her love. To go into battle without her assistance is unthinkable and downright foolish.
What is so second nature to us… is so foreign and alien to our Protestant brothers and sisters. Our Orthodox brothers and sisters have no problem - in fact they often surpass us in honouring the holy Mother of God. Even our Jewish brothers and sisters honour the power of a mother's prayers, especially when death nears.
Of this terrible final battle of our era, the Mother of Jesus is the General of the army of God. We enlist under her banner by honouring her, by imitating her virtues (especially those of chastity, obedience, simplicity and humility), and like St John Paul the Great entrusting ourselves and all that we have to her Immaculate Heart. Totus Tuus, 'totally yours'.
Of these things, the entrustment or consecration of ourselves and all that we have is the most important. In this we follow the example of the baby Jesus who completely and utterly entrusted Himself and His welfare to Mary. In her holy womb Jesus was 100% dependent upon her for everything His human nature required. If Jesus trusted her this much, then there is no higher vouch for her trustworthiness is there?!
"My Immaculate Heart will be your refuge and the way that will lead you to God" – that is her Fatima promise. Let's take it seriously.
"Tell everybody that God gives graces through the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Tell them to ask graces from her, and that the Heart of Jesus wishes to be venerated together with the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Ask them to plead for peace from the Immaculate Heart of Mary, for the Lord has confided the peace of the world to her." Jacinta of Fatima
So let us entrust ourselves, and our Christian brothers and sisters, and this terrible final battle of our era to the Immaculate Heart of Mary the Mother of Jesus. Without her there is no assurance of victory, the Lord himself has said so.
O Mary, Mother of Jesus our Lord and Saviour, after the example of Jesus I entrust myself, my past, my present and my future, all that I have and all that God has given to me into your gentle and secure hands and into your Immaculate Heart. Lead me to my post, my assignment and my role and my cohort in the battle for the kingdom of God on earth. Train me and equip me, and help me to hear, heed and obey all of the battle instructions Jesus transmits through you. With you as our General may we experience the triumph of the battle and bring as many with us as possible through the gates of heaven. Amen.