Friday, August 8, 2014

Fairy Tale Friday: Our Lady's Child

Welcome to Fairy Tale Friday!

For this month's tale, I read Our Lady's Child, or also known as Mary's Child.  It's a quick read that I believe really has a moral to share with readers.

A young couple with a child is so poor that they are unable to even feed their child.  One day in the forest, the father meets the Virgin Mary who offers to take and provide for the child.  The father agrees, and the child enters heaven and lives a happy, fulfilled life.  The Virgin Mary must take a trip away from the child when she reaches the teenage years, and offers the child the keys to the kingdom for safe keeping.  The child is warned that she can enter 12 of the 13 kingdoms whenever she wants, but she must never enter the final kingdom for it was strictly forbidden and would bring her much unhappiness.  The child fights the urge, but falls to the temptation.  When the Virgin Mary returns, she instantly knows of the child's sin and gives her three opportunities to confess to it.  The child refuses, and is sent to earth to suffer in silence.  During her suffering, she meets a king that rescues her and ultimately falls in love.  They marry and eventually have children.  With each child, the Virgin Mary returns for the child's confession and each time, she refuses bringing more unhappiness along with it.  It is at the final moment, death upon her, that she finally chooses to confess the truth from so long ago.  At the moment of her confession, she is set free and lives happily ever after.

Our Lady's Child is a tale that is new to me and very much entrenched in religion.  I found it an interesting tale because of this religious connection, but also because of the strong moral that it is trying to relay to its readers.  The Moral:  Don't lie.  The truth shall set you free.  I do not claim to be a real religious person, but the moral and the story resonates with me.  I often have the conversation with my children that lies will only bring more harm than good, and not just to the person speaking them . . . just as the story demonstrates.

Our Lady's Child does not fall into the category of one of my favorite fairy tales, but it is definitely one that I recommend reading nonetheless.  It is a quick read, an engaging story, and one that leaves you with a good message, even despite the small amount of violence that typically accompanies Grimms' tales.

Have you previously read Our Lady's Child?  What are your thoughts on the tale?  Do you believe that there is more to the story than what I have already noted?

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