Sunday, December 8, 2013

Advetn Calendar, December 8

Isaiah 11:1-10 (4A); Romans 15:4-9; Matthew 3:1-12

Reflection by Sister Barbara Lynn Schmitz

The teaching of the church tells us that our Blessed Mother was born without the stain of original sin. For many of us this language is confusing and difficult to understand.  What is the stain of original sin? Is it our human condition which urges us to seek self over God? Is it our inability to live our lives surrendering our very beings to God's loving embrace?

Answers to these questions are mere human attempts to explain the mystery of our faith. Perhaps today reflecting on the birth and life of Mary is a call to reflect on the ways that our loving God is calling us to let go of the pain and anguish of our human weakness.

Isaiah tells us from the stump of Jesse, a shoot shall sprout and a bud shall blossom.  New life will come to those who listen to the word of God. Mary listened to the word of God. She shows us the path to take. Her life exemplifies a faith that proclaims that all things are possible with God.

Mary's whole life points to Jesus. With her whole being she embraces a life where mystery calls for faith and faith calls for action. From the first moment of Jesus stirring in her womb to the cross, Mary knew joy and anguish. A sword pierced her heart but she also saw the glory of Resurrection.

Our lives today may be a series of dyings and risings, certainly we must carry our cross, but  Mary's witness has shown us that we need only to look to Jesus. Jesus loved his mother Mary. Jesus loves each of us and calls us closer to himself through  this mystery of faith.

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