Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Advent Calendar - December 19, 2012

Readings: Judges 13:2-7, 24-25a; Luke 1:5-25

Reflection by Sister Anna Corrine O’Connor
Theology Teacher, Presentation Academy, Louisville, Kentucky

Today’s reading from Judges speaks of an angel coming to the wife of Manoah telling her that though she has been barren for many years, she shall bear a son who will be given to a life of service to God in the temple. When Manoah heard this news from his wife, he wanted to hear the message himself and asked God to send the messenger again so that he might know the truth. The angel appeared again to his wife, but Manoah again was not present.

To whom did the angel first give the news (the wife of Manoah), and why is she not given a name? Isn’t she the bearer of the good news of Samson’s conception? And yet, though the angel appears to her a second time, we still do not know her name!

How many nameless people will we encounter today as we prepare for celebrating the good news of Samson’s and Jesus’ birth? Not much is said about the nameless woman who sacrificed her body and soul and later her son, Samson, for us and for God.

We can’t give this woman a name, but we can take time to give thanks for the many nameless women who are our ancestors in faith. Women who have shown us how to be faithful to God’s call in our lives. We can take time to name the women in our lives who sacrificed their lives so that we might have life, so that we might have a living faith and relationship with God.

As we celebrate the third day of the “Oh Antiphons,” Root of Jesse, let us pray in thanks for the faith-filled women who still remain nameless in our world today. Let us do all we can so that women begin to receive the name and recognition they deserve.

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