Ti Biag ken Pammati

Tribute to Mary, Our Holy Mother of God

2023: A year with many challenges. 2024: God gives us “Life and Faith” as long as we are alive … there’s always hope.

Deacon Patrick Constantino | Photos courtesy Dcn. Pat Constantino

With Hope, let us work together and make it happen and enjoy many of God’s blessings (2024) and tomorrow’s!

A reading from the Holy Gospel according to Luke (2:16–21):

The shepherds went in haste to Bethlehem and found Mary and Joseph, and the infant lying in the manger. When they saw this, they made known the message that had been told them about this child.

All who heard it were amazed by what had been told them by the shepherds. And Mary kept all these things, reflecting on them in her heart.

Then the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen, just as it had been told to them.

When eight days were completed for his circumcision, he was named Jesus, the name given him by the angel before he was conceived in the womb.

This collage of family pictures includes our son Cary—a gift from God!

The Gospel of the Lord!

The Lord let his face shine upon you and be gracious to you. The Lord looks upon you, kindly and gives you peace. It is clear from this prayer of blessing given to Aaron and his sons the Lord takes great delight in looking at us. Each day, God gazes upon us with love. His face is shining down upon us, just as the sun shines upon the earth.

Imagine a parent holding a baby, staring into his or her eyes. The meeting of their eyes reveals a longing for connection and an intimacy that surpasses a mere glance or superficial look. Their mutual regard allows them to delight in each other’s presence.

No words are needed at this moment, for the eyes speak “I love you” louder than any words can. This is the face shining on us, looking upon us, and beholding our countenance.

We live in an age of unprecedented distraction, however, where an attention economy vies for our gaze.

We spend a large portion of each day staring at screens purporting to depict reality when all around us, the reality of God is staring us in the face.

How can we slow down and set aside our distractions, often our all-important to-do lists, to recognize the Lord in our midst? How do we behold the Lord’s face in return for His contemplation of us?

Through the Incarnation, made possible by Mary’s irrevocable “yes” to become the mother of God, the face of God was made visible on earth in a whole new way.

No doubt, Mary held Jesus and locked eyes with her son; they peered with utmost wonder into each other’s faces.

Today, we still can see the face of Christ all around us—through the beauty of creation, our neighbor and even our own selves. As Mary held Jesus and contemplated all that He was, so the Father holds us.

As a child lies in the arms of his or her mother or father and the two behold one another, so we remain in the arms of the Father who loves us without fail. God looks upon us with a love casting our inner darkness and insecurity, our anxiety and sin.

In prayer we allow God to see us, love us, and give us peace. And as we return his gaze and witness the face of Love, we know we are God’s beloved children. God gazes upon us with Love, for we are His beloved children!

The song, titled “Mary Did You Know,” you must hear and reflect. It is about Jesus, her gifted Son from God to us.

Our number 13 gift from God, great grand child Caleb Cadelinia with great grandma Cora Constantino.

Mary, did you know that your baby boy. Would one day walk on water?

Mary, did you know that your baby boy. Would save our sons and daughters?

Did you know that your baby boy. Has come to make you new; This Child that you delivered. Will soon deliver you?

Mary, did you know that your baby boy. Will give sight to a blind man?

Mary, did you know that your baby boy. Has walked where angels trod, And when you kiss your little baby. You’ve kissed the face of God?

Mary, did you know? The blind will see, the deaf will hear. The dead will live again. The lame will leap, the dumb will speak. The praises of the Lamb!

Mary, did you know that your baby boy is Lord of all creation?

Mary, did you know that your baby boy. Will one day rule the nations?

Did you know that your baby boy. Was Heaven’s perfect Lamb. And the sleeping Child you’re holding is the great, the Great I am?

Oh, Mary, Mary, did you know?

Mother (from right) and Son who lived like us!

I love this song and I listen to it over and over again. It reminds me of my son Cary who just passed away, of the beautiful times and struggles he went through in this life which was given to us by God and returning to Him. Cary fought to the end, then God took him home.

This song tells us of the story Jesus lived like us and suffered like us, because He loves us. From birth to death.

At times we parents think we should die before our children. But when it is different, we question, “Why?”

But God has a plan for each and every one of us. Let us enjoy His plans, even if we do not understand them.

Thank you God, for the gift of our son Cary! May he rest in peace!

On July 1, 2022, Patrick Constantino retired as a Deacon for the Roman Catholic Church in Hawai‘i, after serving for thirty-five years and becoming on June 18, 1987, the first Deacon of Filipino ancestry for the Roman Catholic Church in Hawai‘i. For twenty-two years, he served as Administrator at Holy Rosary Church in Pā‘ia, St. Rita Church in Ha‘ikū and St. Gabriel Church in Ke‘anae. His last assignment before retiring was at St. Joseph Church in Makawao.
Prior to his ordination, Constantino was in government—first appointed in 1966 as Assistant Sergeant of Arms by the Speaker of the House Elmer F. Cravalho. When Cravalho became Maui’s first Mayor, Constantino became his Executive Assistant—the first of Filipino ancestry. Later, Constantino became the first County Treasurer of Filipino ancestry and the first County Grants Administrator and Risk Manager of Filipino ancestry.
Constantino is married to his lovely wife Corazon for sixty-two years. They are blessed with four children, eleven grandchildren, and fifteen great grandchildren.