Blog Post - March 25th
Annunciation of Our Lord| Video| Daily Meditation| Daily Quote by S. Padre Pio| Divine Mercy Reflection
Annunciation of Our Lord
The feast of the Annunciation, now recognized as a solemnity, was first celebrated in the fourth or fifth century. Its central focus is the Incarnation: God has become one of us. From all eternity God had decided that the Second Person of the Blessed Trinity should become human. Now, as Luke 1:26-38 tells us, the decision is being realized. The God-Man embraces all humanity, indeed all creation, to bring it to God in one great act of love. Because human beings have rejected God, Jesus will accept a life of suffering and an agonizing death: “No one has greater love than this, to lay down one’s life for one’s friends” (John 15:13).
Mary has an important role to play in God’s plan. From all eternity God destined her to be the mother of Jesus and closely related to him in the creation and redemption of the world. We could say that God’s decrees of creation and redemption are joined in the decree of Incarnation. Because Mary is God’s instrument in the Incarnation, she has a role to play with Jesus in creation and redemption. It is a God-given role. It is God’s grace from beginning to end. Mary becomes the eminent figure she is only by God’s grace. She is the empty space where God could act. Everything she is she owes to the Trinity.
She is the virgin-mother who fulfills Isaiah 7:14 in a way that Isaiah could not have imagined. She is united with her son in carrying out the will of God (Psalm 40:8-9; Hebrews 10:7-9; Luke 1:38).
Together with Jesus, the privileged and graced Mary is the link between heaven and earth. She is the human being who best, after Jesus, exemplifies the possibilities of human existence. She received into her lowliness the infinite love of God. She shows how an ordinary human being can reflect God in the ordinary circumstances of life. She exemplifies what the Church and every member of the Church is meant to become. She is the ultimate product of the creative and redemptive power of God. She manifests what the Incarnation is meant to accomplish for all of us.
Sometimes spiritual writers are accused of putting Mary on a pedestal and thereby discouraging ordinary humans from imitating her. Perhaps such an observation is misguided. God did put Mary on a pedestal and has put all human beings on a pedestal. We have scarcely begun to realize the magnificence of divine grace, the wonder of God’s freely given love. The marvel of Mary—even in the midst of her very ordinary life—is God’s shout to us to wake up to the marvelous creatures that we all are by divine design.
“Enriched from the first instant of her conception with the splendor of an entirely unique holiness, the virgin of Nazareth is hailed by the heralding angel, by divine command, as ‘full of grace’ (cf. Luke 1:28). To the heavenly messenger she replies: ‘Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it done to me according to thy word’ (Luke 1:38). Thus the daughter of Adam, Mary, consenting to the word of God, became the Mother of Jesus. Committing herself wholeheartedly and impeded by no sin to God’s saving will, she devoted herself totally, as a handmaid of the Lord, to the person and work of her Son, under and with him, serving the mystery of redemption, by the grace of Almighty God” (Vatican II, Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, 56).
Queen of Heaven:
Most of us retain fond memories of our mothers as the locus of family forgiveness. So it is not surprising that we turn to our Blessed Mother for access to divine mercy. One thing is certain, Mary is the Queen of Heaven and our supreme intercessor with her beloved Son.
Quote by S. Padre Pio:
God is faithful...How could you persuade yourself of anything else. Is not our good God above anything we can conceive? Is not He more interested than we are in our salvation?
Divine Mercy Reflection
Reflections on Notebook One: 11-111
This first notebook of Saint Faustina begins her private revelations given from the Heart of Jesus to her. She writes in a beautiful and simple way. Though, as mentioned in the introduction to this book, her actual words are not quoted in these reflections that follow, the messages that she received and articulated are presented.
In truth, her messages are those contained in Sacred Scripture and in the Tradition of our Church. And if you were to read through the lives and teachings of the saints, you would find the same revelations. God has always spoken to us throughout the ages. He speaks the one Message of Truth, and He reveals that Message in love. The revelations to Saint Faustina are one new way that God continues to speak and reveal Himself to us, His sons and daughters.
The reflections in this first chapter, based on the first notebook, are intentionally short and focused. They are a way for you, the reader, to slowly and carefully listen to the Heart of God spoken to this great saint. Read these reflections slowly and prayerfully. Ponder them throughout the day and allow the Lord to speak to You the message He wants to give.
Reflection 84: The Blessed Host
It is impossible for us to love and adore Christ deeply enough as He is present in the Most Holy Eucharist. When we are before Him, present in the Most Holy Eucharist, we should see the Almighty God present in veiled form. He is: Mercy, Eternal Life, The Eternal God, The Savior of Sinners, The Living Water, The Fire of Pure Love, The Medicine for All Our Ills, All Sentiments of Love, The Hope of All, The Lifter of Burdens…and He is worthy of all our trust (See Diary #356).
What do you see when you gaze upon the Sacred Host? With your eyes you see bread, but with your soul you should see God. You should see God in all His glory and power and you should adore Him with all your might. Think about how you relate to our Lord as He is present in the Holy Eucharist. Pray that God will flood your mind with a true knowledge of Him and inspire your heart with a burning love.
Lord, help me to know and love You as You are present in the Most Holy Eucharist. Help me to understand the gift of Your Mercy made present through this Holy Gift. May I learn to adore You every time I am before Your presence in this Sacred Host. Jesus, I trust in You.