This weekend, the Church celebrates the Fourth Sunday of Advent and the Gospel reading comes from Luke 1:26-38. Before the Annunciation, the angel Gabriel appeared to announce the birth of John the Baptist to Zechariah while he was conducting his priestly duties at the Temple. Meanwhile, Mary–humble and unknown–received the angel at the small village of Nazareth. Mary’s circumstances may have been humbler but the foretold reality was far greater. God often chooses the humble to carry out His will in order to show that truly great deeds are only done through His grace. By responding to God’s will with obedience, Mary saved us from the disobedience of Eve. A Church Father once taught that while death came through Eve, life came through Mary. God entered humanity through the free choice of Mary, showing how much He values our free choice. Meanwhile, Mary freely accepted the consequences of being the Mother of God, including suffering at the foot of the Cross with her Son. Mary’s humility is the good foundation of the spiritual life and we can pray the Angelus and the Hail Mary to imitate her in listening to God’s will.
“Spiritual Talk” – The Fourth Sunday of Advent – Fr. Anthony Ho
by Kenny Cheng