Celebrating the Annunciation!
Oh joy of joys! Happy Solemnity of the Annunciation!
Today our liturgical calendar marks the momentous occasion in which the Blessed Mother becomes the new Eve through her eternal "Fiat" to the Divine Will of God!
Our humanity, overshadowed by sin and a longing for the Messiah, is granted not only the Savior Incarnate... we are granted a dignity that far surpasses our mortal minds. God, Himself, takes on our flesh. God - the timeless, omnipotent Author of Life - constrains Himself in the womb of His Mother that He might teach us all the way of holiness.
God did not demean Himself by taking on the form of man. Instead, God elevated humanity to Himself, allowing His Divinity to sanctify the physical temple of the flesh. This is simply unfathomable, and I honestly get a little dumbstruck every time I think about it.
Anyway, you folks know I'm a big fan of the Annunciation. I've spoken of it many times in the past. Bear with me while I talk about it again. This is one of those mysteries I'd be content talking about forever. In fact, I'm hoping to ask God to let me watch a "replay" of it when I die just so I can see that blessing unfold over and over again! :)
When Eve said that first "No" to the Divine Will of God, humanity suffered. Until that "No," all of creation was in perfect union with God. There was joy, happiness and peace because everything followed the Will of God (which was and always will be perfection). However, as soon as Eve consciously turned away from God's Will, she unwittingly destroyed the peaceful flow. It was like a pebble being dropped into God's ocean of tranquility, and the ripples reached out, touching everything and everyone in future generations, reverberating back to the source from all angles.
As a result of this break from God's Will, humanity was forced out of Eden to await one who would help rectify the reverberations that disfigured creation. One would come who would help restore balance, peace and dignity to the fallen people. One would come who would say "Yes" where Eve had said "No."
My favorite Theotokos icon
The Blessed Mother was that person - the Theotokos. Mary, within her immaculate womb, bore the remedy to sin and death. Only through her consent to God's Divine Will did Salvation through Christ become possible.
This is why Catholics believe her to be the Mediatrix of all Graces. However, as pointed out in the Second Vatican Council's Lumen gentium, this understanding "takes nothing away, or adds nothing to the dignity and efficacy of Christ the one Mediator."
Mediatrix simply means "woman mediator" and Our Lady was (and is) the go-between of God and humanity. Her sinless life - from her Immaculate Conception until her glorious Assumption - was one, singular "Fiat" to the Will of the Father.
And as I said before, she's not only our example of how we, too, can lead lives in union with God's Will, she's also our strongest intercessor helping us ensure we do just that!
Jesus, having given everything He even unto His last drop of Blood from the Cross, looked out at His people and saw one thing left to share with us - His Most Holy Mother. Mary, who had been His consolation, joy and refuge was no left without her Son. To both console her and to console us, He bequeathed this gem to us through the person of St. John.
Louisa Piccarretta's description of this moment is entirely too moving for me to fully encapsulate here without delving into the entire Hour. Suffice to say, however, that this gift of Christ was majestic, and I, for one, am eternally grateful for His arrival via Annunciation / Incarnation! :)
Say it loud and proud, Angel Gabriel!!!
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