Daily Reflection

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December 20

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Do not be afraid, Mary,
for you have found favor with God.
Luke  1:26-38


The annunciation is a faith event. This poor, unconventual peasant woman’s free and autonomous answer opens a new chapter in the history of God with the world. .. Annunciations keep on happening, bringing into the ordinariness of life a message of God’s gracious care and desire to repair the world.  Touching the root of our humanity, these messages reveal hidden possibilities within the limits of our existence, revive our hope in the midst of struggle, and summon our energies for creative action. Seen in this light, the particulars of Mary’s call, unique in that only one woman conceives and delivers Jesus, illuminate the fundamental dynamic of everyone’s vocation through the ages. The Holy One calls all people, indeed all women, and gifts them for their own task in the ongoing history of grace.
Elizabeth Johnson


Do not be afraid.


Think of the annunciation in this perspective. What are its implications in your own life?

Suggested Reading

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.”
But she was greatly troubled at what was said
and pondered what sort of greeting this might be.
Then the angel said to her,
“Do not be afraid, Mary,
for you have found favor with God.
Luke 1:26-38

The Blessed Virgin is the woman of faith who made room for God in her heart and in her plans; she is the believer capable of perceiving in the gift of her Son the coming of that ‘fullness of time in which God, by choosing the humble path of human existence, entered personally into the history of salvation.
Pope Francis

We do not have access to Mary’s religious experience, but can simply say that by the power of the Spirit, she encountered the mystery of the living God, the gracious God of her life, the saving Wisdom of her people. In that encounter the die was cast for the coming of the Messiah.
Elizabeth Johnson

The modern woman will note with pleasant surprise that Mary of Nazareth, while completely devoted to the will of God, was far from being a timidly submissive woman or one whose piety was repellent to others; on the contrary, she was a woman who did not hesitate to proclaim that God vindicates the humble and the oppressed, and removes the powerful people of this world from their privileged positions.
Paul VI

Vocation does not come from a voice out there calling me to be something I am not. It comes from a voice in here calling me to be the person I was born to be.
Thomas Merton

The place God calls you to is the place where your deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet.
Frederick Buechner

The only durable sense of success is if you’ve followed your calling.
Jim Harrison

I think it would be well, and proper, and obedient, and pure, to grasp your one necessity and not let it go, to dangle from it limp wherever it takes you.
Annie Dillard

God did not direct His call to Isaiah— Isaiah overheard God saying, “. . . who will go for Us?” The call of God is not just for a select few but for everyone. Whether I hear God’s call or not depends on the condition of my ears, and exactly what I hear depends upon my spiritual attitude.
Os Guinness

Everybody has a vocation to some form of life-work. However, behind that call (and deeper than any call), everybody has a vocation to be a person to be fully and deeply human in Christ Jesus.”
Brennan Manning