Monday, December 8, 2014

Advent Reflection: Feast of the Immaculate Conception

Feast of the Immaculate Conception

Take a moment and ask yourself: Who is Mary to you? Is she simply a character in the Gospels? Or is Mary someone you have a personal relationship with? I know several people who have a deep and intimate relationship with Mary. When I hear them talk about Mary being so present and real to them, I long to have a similar relationship with her!

Mary was an amazing woman. Talk about the personification of faith! How many of us would have believed the fantastic prophecy of the angel? I wonder what thoughts and emotions Mary experienced when the angel appeared to her. The Gospel tells us that “Mary was greatly troubled by the angel’s message.” I assume that her confusion would be the natural reaction of anyone who had an angel appear. The angel’s message may have made it even more unbelievable to Mary!

However, Mary was deeply rooted in God. Even though she didn’t understand how this plan of God’s would unfold, Mary’s heart was open and receptive to God’s message. She simply and wholeheartedly said yes to God’s plan for her!

At the same time, Mary was human. She experienced all the emotions and turmoil we experience at times. Mary must have wondered what all this would mean for her and her life? How would this unfold? What was she to tell her parents? Would they believe her? Trust her? Mary must have known that life as she knew it would never be the same! Yet, she trusted God! And she trusted God to give her the grace she would need!

Most likely, we will not have an angel appearing to us asking us to bear God’s child! Even if an angel does not come to us, we also are called to be “Christ Bearers.” How will we respond to God’s call?

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