Let’s start with the Blessed Mother:
124. Mary, recognizing the newness that Jesus brought, sang: “My spirit rejoices” (Luke 1:47), and Jesus himself “rejoiced in the Holy Spirit” (Luke 10:21). As he passed by, “all the people rejoiced” (Luke 13:17). After his resurrection, wherever the disciples went, there was “much joy” (Acts 8:8). Jesus assures us: “You will be sorrowful, but your sorrow will turn into joy… I will see you again and your hearts will rejoice, and no one will take your joy from you” (John 16:20.22). “These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full” (John 15:11).
If joy is to be found in the Gospel, it moves in circumstances beyond mere happiness. Mary’s canticle finds joy in the upheaval of social realities and expectations. Jesus accompanies the poor in their challenges and obstacles. Jesus’ farewell to his disciples is an occasion of worry and wonder. In all of those possibilities, as well as our own uncertainties, the promise of joy remains.