Gospel: Luke 1: 26-38
The angel Gabriel was sent from God
to a town of Galilee called Nazareth,
to a virgin betrothed to a man named Joseph,
of the house of David,
and the virgin’s name was Mary.
And coming to her, he said,
“Hail, full of grace! The Lord is with you.”
But she was greatly troubled at what was said
and pondered what sort of greeting this might be.
Then the angel said to her,
“Do not be afraid, Mary,
for you have found favor with God.
Behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son,
and you shall name him Jesus.
He will be great and will be called Son of the Most High,
and the Lord God will give him the throne of David his father,
and he will rule over the house of Jacob forever,
and of his Kingdom there will be no end.”
But Mary said to the angel,
“How can this be,
since I have no relations with a man?”
And the angel said to her in reply,
“The Holy Spirit will come upon you,
and the power of the Most High will overshadow you.
Therefore the child to be born
will be called holy, the Son of God.
And behold, Elizabeth, your relative,
has also conceived a son in her old age,
and this is the sixth month for her who was called barren;
for nothing will be impossible for God.”
Mary said, “Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord.
May it be done to me according to your word.”
Then the angel departed from her.
In today’s Gospel, Luke recounts the Annunciation to the Blessed Virgin Mary: A poor, young, betrothed girl is greeted by the Angel Gabriel who gives her incredible news that will change her life.
What a situation for a young girl of that time to find herself in! By having the courage to accept the role thrust upon her, she risked everything—her honor, her future, and even her life.
We all have had situations of uncertainty in our lives we didn’t want to accept. It takes considerable strength of character to face our obligations head-on and not try to “manage” or control things or make our burdens lighter or change the way things appear to others—or to stick our heads in the sand in the hopes our obligations will disappear. It is very difficult to accept circumstances that are unpredictable or uncomfortable, to trust God, and to live through them and see where they lead, especially when others view us in a less positive light.
Mary’s “yes” meant she let go of her security and boldly accepted an uncertain future.
As we prepare to celebrate the birth of Christ, perhaps we can let this time unfold before us as our hearts need and not cling to our plan. Maybe we should just trust in His.
– Sr. Donna Lombardi, FCM
Are you anxious about many things beyond your control? Take some time to relax and meditate on God’s divine plan.