Blue Ribbons

There is a beautiful shrine in our parish Church for Our Mother Mary, the Undoer of Knots. It sits in the corner of our sanctuary. The custom is to go to the shrine and pray, asking our Mother to help undo a knot in your life, then the intention is carefully written on a strip of paper and tied onto the wire boards positioned next to the image of our Mother.

When we feel our prayer has been answered, and our knot un-done, we return to the shrine to tie a sky blue ribbon on those boards full of white strips of hope. It caught my eye just the other Sunday as I prepared to serve at one of our beautiful First Communion masses.

Seeing those beautiful blue ribbons caused my mind to stop, and heart to smile.

Mary sees us and loves us enough to help unravel those knots. This had been on my heart earlier that morning as I worked on untangling a terrible knotted mess of necklaces. Oh my, I almost had to slow my breathing down while working on those strands for my girls and myself! I carefully looked for the problem.

What had caused the tangle? What was the first step to take on unraveling this mess? Was there something I could do to immediately start the process – undoing the clasps per se? I had to be so very careful not to work too rapidly and break a strand. It was a long and laborious process.

This made me think of our Mother, how does she look at our knots?

Does she prayerfully discern what to take to Jesus, looking for our sinful attachments and needed freedom? Does she help to give us wisdom in how to take the first steps to a release? Does she cause a stirring in our hearts to detach ourselves from people, activities, or thoughts, that take us away from God and cause the knots to hinder our relationship to Him?

I believe she does, I can even picture her and Jesus’ heads bent over our lives, their hands together gently freeing the knots in our lives carefully making sure not to break anything. Just as God answers our prayers differently from how we sometimes expect, the answer isn’t always to take the knots away, but rather it is to find peace with those knots.

So, those blue ribbons represent so much more than answered prayers to me, but rather love. I am part of a community that is seen, heard and loved.

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Shona Terrell

Shona Terrell

Shona is a British single mama to four wonderful American children. She feels closest to God outside, or when enjoying a beautiful art form such as ballet, art, or music. She fell in love with, and converted to, the Catholic church 13 years ago. God has been very good to her.

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