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, favored one! 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.
Introductory Prayer: Heavenly Father, you have given
Mary to us as our Blessed Mother. Thank you. I
know that she constantly intercedes on our behalf and that
you listen to her prayer. I am confident in your
mercy and love. You are guiding me home to spend
eternity with you. I place all my trust in you.
I offer you my weak, but grateful love in return.
Petition: Lord, grant me the grace to embrace you in
faith, hope, and love.
1. Sent from God: Too often
we attribute too much of our achievements to our own
doing. Our education, wealth, or technological ability can lead us
to have a false sense of security in our ability
to shape our world. Today’s Gospel reminds us that God’s
plan for the salvation of the human race is his
own initiative. He sends his Son into the world at
a precise time and in a precise place. He prepares
Mary beforehand with everything she will need to fulfill her
mission as Mother of the Redeemer – a mission that
she accepts in freedom and through faith. I do well
to realize more and more that God is also the
true protagonist of my own life.
2. Do Not Be
Afraid: One of the constant refrains of the Gospel is
Jesus’ admonition: “Do not be afraid.” When the Lord draws
near, our natural tendency is to be afraid. We can
be afraid of his presence. We can be afraid of
what he might ask of us. We can be afraid
of our own limitations in the face of the call
to true conversion and holiness of life. We can be
afraid of the apparent obstacles along the path of Christian
discipleship. Like Mary, we need to overcome our fear by
embracing God’s will with faith and love. As our confidence
in God increases, our fear decreases. As our love increases,
our fear disappears. Of what am I afraid in my
relationship with the Lord? Am I surrendering my fear by
giving myself in faith?
3. May It Be Done to Me:
What a truly incredible thing it is to make the
salvation of the human race dependent upon the free response
of Mary! Mary’s “yes” to God shows us the power
and transcendence of personal choice. It also sheds light on
the importance of our own personal “yes” to God with
regard to his plan for our lives. Mary’s loving, faith-filled
consent to a plan she did not fully understand becomes
the model of our own daily consent to the divine
will as it manifests itself in our daily lives.
with Christ: Lord, I have remembered through this meditation that
you are the one guiding my life and all of
history. I need to be mindful that you always intend
good for me, even if it is painful and purifying.
So I should never be afraid of your hand in
my life. I believe and trust in you my Lord,
but increase my faith, hope and love.
Resolution: I will embrace
God’s will today as Mary did -- with faith and