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Feast of the Annunciation

The Annunciation – Mystery and Grace

The Annunciation, recounted at the beginning of Saint Luke’s Gospel,  is a humble, hidden event – no one saw it, no one except Mary knew of it – but at the same time it was crucial to the history of humanity.  When the Virgin said her “yes” to the Angel’s announcement, Jesus was conceived and with him began the new era of history that was to be ratified in Easter as the “new and eternal Covenant”.  In fact, Mary’s “yes” perfectly mirrors that of Christ himself when he entered the world, as the Letter to the Hebrews says, interpreting Psalm 40 (39):  “As it is written of me in the book, I have come to do  your will, O God” (Heb 10:7).

The Son’s obedience was reflected in that of the Mother and thus, through the encounter of these two “yeses”, God was able to take on a human face.  This is why the Annunciation is a Christological feast as well, because it celebrates a central mystery of Christ: the Incarnation.

“Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord, let it be done to me according to your Word”.  Mary’s reply to the Angel is extended in the Church, which is called to make Christ present in history, offering her own availability so that God may continue to visit humanity with his mercy …

We often contemplate Our Lady, who on Calvary sealed the “yes” she pronounced at Nazareth.  United to Christ, Witness of the Father’s love, Mary lived martyrdom of the soul.  Let us call on her intercession with confidence, so that the Church, faithful to her mission, may offer to the whole world a courageous witness of God’s love.                                 (25 March 2007)
Taken from Holiness is always in Season – Pope Benedict XVI

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