Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Mary’s joy was to form Christ in her own body; her joy now is to form Christ in our souls.

“Mary showed complete trust in God by agreeing to be used as an instrument in his plan of salvation. She trusted him in spite of her nothingness because she knew he who is mighty could do great things in her and through her. Once she said “yes” to him, she never doubted. She was just a young woman, but she belonged to God and nothing nor anyone could separate her from him.” – Blessed Teresa of Calcutta: 1910 – 1997: (Founded the Missionaries of Charity in 1948)

Gospel text: (LK 1:46-56)
Mary said:

“My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord;
my spirit rejoices in God my savior.
for he has looked upon his lowly servant.
From this day all generations will call me blessed:
the Almighty has done great things for me,
and holy is his Name.
He has mercy on those who fear him
in every generation.
He has shown the strength of his arm,
and has scattered the proud in their conceit.
He has cast down the mighty from their thrones
and has lifted up the lowly.
He has filled the hungry with good things,
and the rich he has sent away empty.
He has come to the help of his servant Israel
for he remembered his promise of mercy,
the promise he made to our fathers,
to Abraham and his children for ever.”

Mary remained with Elizabeth about three months
and then returned to her home.

The first line of the Magnificat expresses the essence of Mary’s life: “My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord”.  She’s not drawing attention to herself.  In her own estimation she is merely a lowly servant of God.  She wants future generations to remember her not for her personal achievements but for what God has done for her and how God has blessed her.

And before her child is born Mary has a lot to say about the world she wants him to be born into.  Mary extols those people who fear God throughout history.  They’re the ones who will enjoy the mercy of God and experience the strength of God’s mighty arm.  Mary isn’t impressed by the rulers of this world who count only on the power of their military or political might.

She looks forward to a world in which the have-nots find themselves lifted up by God.  She sings the praises of those who are hungry now for the things only God can provide.  She knows that people who regard themselves as wealthy because of their earthly possessions will discover how fleeting these things really are!

As a true daughter of Israel, Mary awaits the fulfillment of the divine promises made to Abraham.  She is well-informed about the traditions of her people – how the prophets and patriarchs learned to rely on God instead of the powers and the resources of the world.  Little wonder that Mary was prepared to give assent to the word God announced to her through the Archangel Gabriel.

Let’s learn to pray the Magnificat both with reference to our Blessed Mother and with reference to our own lives, acknowledging how God who is mighty has done great things for all of us.

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