The Gospel account of the Annunciation (Luke 1: 26-38), heard also on the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception on December 8, heralds us into the coming days of Christmas! The sending of an Angel reminds us that God has a plan. That God has found “favor” on this chosen daughter reminds us that God, too, watches over all His chosen sons and daughters. Upon hearing that this plan involves a choice and response, we are reminded that all can do God’s will with loving trust. And, that God’s plan is also seen in the lives of kinspersons and neighbors, His hand is visible, steady, and tangible reminding us that in God all things are possible!
The Collect for this day is most familiar to those who pray the Angelus at the prescribed times of the day. It brings together, in a single prayer, both the Paschal Mystery and the Mystery of the Incarnation, for what we see revealed in the “little town” of Bethlehem is brought to its culmination in the “Holy City” of Jerusalem! And so we pray:
Pour forth, we beseech you, O Lord, your grace into our hearts, that we, to whom the Incarnation of Christ your Son was made known by the message of an Angel, may by his Passion and Cross be brought to the glory of his Resurrection.
Please remember to invite family, friends, and neighbors to participate in Christmas Masses with you … remember that the shepherds were invited by the Angels to come to behold the Mystery with their own eyes and hearts! Masses on Christmas Eve will be at 4:00pm (in both the old and new churches!), 6:00pm (for children and families), 8:00pm (in Spanish) and at Midnight. Masses on Christmas Morning will be at 10:00am and at Noon.
May these final days of Advent be filled with rich graces and blessings!