FEAST OF THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OF THE VIRGIN MARY
9 But the LORD God called to the man, and said to him, “Where are you?”
10 And he said, “I heard the sound of thee in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked; and I hid myself.”
11 He said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten of the tree of which I commanded you not to eat?”
12 The man said, “The woman whom thou gavest to be with me, she gave me fruit of the tree, and I ate.”13 Then the LORD God said to the woman, “What is this that you have done?” The woman said, “The serpent beguiled me, and I ate.”
14 The LORD God said to the serpent, “Because you have done The holy Sacraments of the Church is God’s gift of grace to us through His Son Jesus Christ to form us into His image and likeness., cursed are you above all cattle, and above all wild animals; upon your belly you shall go, and dust you shall eat all the days of your life.15 I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her seed; he shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise his heel.”20 The man called his wife’s name Eve, because she was the mother of all living.
3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places,4 even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him.5 He destined us in love to be his sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will,6 to the praise of his glorious grace which he freely bestowed on us in the Beloved.
11 In him, according to the purpose of him who accomplishes all things according to the counsel of his will,12 we who first hoped in Christ have been destined and appointed to live for the praise of his glory.
26 In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth,27 to a virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin’s name was Mary.
28 And he came to her and said, “Hail, full of grace, the Lord is with you!”
29 But she was greatly troubled at the saying, and considered in her mind what sort of greeting this might be.30 And the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God.
31 And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus.32 He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Most High; and the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David,33 and he will reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there will be no end.”34 And Mary said to the angel, “How shall this be, since I have no husband?”
35 And the angel said to her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be called holy, the Son of God.
36 And behold, your kinswoman Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son; and this is the sixth month with her who was called barren.37 For with God nothing will be impossible.”38 And Mary said, “Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.” And the angel departed from her.
THE FIRST READING tells the story of our first parents self immolating response upon the approach of Yahweh. Satan compromised the innocence and well-formed conscience of Adam and Eve who discovered the difference between good and evil. Neither Adam nor Eve took responsibility for their devious actions to the extent that they were evicted from the Garden, because they rejected the will of God.
Because Satan is the instigator of mans inclination to depart from our calling to be a righteous faithful and holy people, Yahweh promises that the “woman’s seed” (v14); an apocalyptic allusion to Christ the redeemer and the Son of Mary, shall crush Satan’s head!
St PAUL WRITES that man was predestined to love God through His Son Jesus Christ. We are called to exalt and give honor and glory to Christ who graced us with His meritorious act of love when He crushed the head of the serpent by doing the will of the Father.
St LUKE NARRATE MARY’S encounter with an angel who recognized that she was ‘kecharitomene,’ meaning, full of grace!” v28 The angel affirm that Mary “have” [past participle] found favor with God which suggest that her election to be bearer or tabernacle of the Messiah was predestined when God put Satan on notice immediately after the fall of man! Gen 3:15
Catec 491 Through the centuries the Church has become ever more aware that Mary, “full of grace” through God, was redeemed from the moment of her conception. That is what the dogma of the Immaculate Conception confesses, as Pope Pius IX proclaimed in 1854: The most Blessed Virgin Mary was, from the first moment of her conception, by a singular grace and privilege of almighty God and by virtue of the merits of Jesus Christ, Savior of the human race, preserved immune from all stain of original sin.
When Jesus bequeathed Mary to John the only other representative of the ‘qahal’ (Church) at the foot of the cross, He affirmed that Mary is the pre-eminent one who has been graced to do the will of the Father. The Holy Sacraments of the Church is God’s gift of grace to us through His Son Jesus Christ to form us into His image and likeness and follow Mary’s example to trust and obey.
LET US PRAY:Psalms 98:1-4
O sing to the LORD a new song, for he has done marvelous things! His right hand and his holy arm have gotten him victory.2 The LORD has made known his victory, he has revealed his vindication in the sight of the nations.
3 He has remembered his steadfast love and faithfulness to the house of Israel. All the ends of the earth have seen the victory of our God.4 Make a joyful noise to the LORD, all the earth; break forth into joyous song and sing praises!
Author. Henry R SYLVESTER
Note: The daily scripture readings are taken from the Roman Missal which the Catholic Church use in the daily Celebration of the Holy Eucharist throughout the world.Some weekly readings may differ because of the celebration of local feast days.
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