4th Sunday of Advent: Mary, Woman of Faith

King David wonders, in our first reading today of the 4th Sunday of Advent, what he can do for God after all God has done for him. David had built himself a palace of cedar wood in Jerusalem, while the ark of the covenant, the sign of God’s presence, is in a tent. Should I build God a temple, a place of beauty where God would dwell and be honored,” the king asks?
The prophet Nathan tells the king: instead a building, God wants to dwell with you and your people.

In today’s gospel, God goes further. God will dwell in Mary’s womb, to take flesh from her and be cared by her. 
Our gospel begins:
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, full of grace! The Lord is with you.

This gospel says so much about Mary. God showered graces upon her: “Hail, full of grace! The Lord is with you.” Just a young girl of 15 or 16, Mary answers: “Be it done to me according to your word. She accepts God’ s call, but she has her questions: “How can this be?”
The power of God will overshadow you, the angel tells her. The only sign she’s given is that her cousin, Elizabeth, “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.”
“Nothing will be impossible for God.”

Then, the angel leaves, and never returns, as far as we know. Mary meets the days as they come with faith, gathering her experiences and treasuring them in her heart.
At Christmas, we’ll see Mary in Bethlehem, humbly, silently holding the Infant, her Child, God with us. At Easter, we’ll see her standing beneath the cross of Jesus.
She’s his mother, a woman of faith. We learn from her and ask her to pray for us: “Pray for us, O holy Mother of God, that we may be made worth of the promises of Christ. 

1 thought on “4th Sunday of Advent: Mary, Woman of Faith

  1. Gloria

    Waiting

    We wait and pray
    for a child to be born.

    We wait and pray
    as a loved one slips
    away from us
    into God’s arms.

    We wait and pray
    (if we’re wise)
    standing in line or
    stuck in traffic.

    We wait and pray
    that the job interview
    ends in employment.

    We wait and pray
    for school graduations,
    expecting each one
    to lead us further
    into the grown-up world.

    We wait and pray for recovery
    from illness and its burdens,
    our own or of someone dear to us.

    We wait and pray for
    the safe return of a loved one-
    from a journey,
    from the hospital,
    from war.

    We wait and pray
    for so many things
    and so many people
    so many times in our lives.

    Waiting is the hardest prayer.

    Gloria Ziemienski June 2005

    Like

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