Meditation on the Solemnity of Saint Mary, Mother of God: “Let yourself be surprised by God” – Vatican News

The Jesuit father Antoine Kerhuel introduces us to meditation, with the readings of the Solemnity of Saint Mary, Mother of God.

First reading: Num 6, 22-27

Psalm: Ps 66 (67), 2-3, 5, 6.8

Second reading: Ga 4, 4-7

Gospel: Lk 2, 16-21

In this 1er January 2023, we celebrate Mary, Mother of God. We also welcome Pope Francis’ message for the World Day of Peace. On this Sunday, let us therefore turn to Mary, she who carried the Prince of Peace.

In today’s Gospel, amazement seizes those who hear the shepherds tell why they set out to discover the son of Mary. They report that an angel said to them:Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news, which will be of great joy to all the people: Today in the city of David a Savior has been born to you, who is Christ the Lord. And this is the sign given to you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a manger.They also report hearing a countless celestial troop proclaim, “Glory to God in the highest, and peace on earth to men whom He loves.In welcoming Jesus, Mary entered into a path of astonishment. To the surprise that was the announcement of this birth were added the ordeal of having to build a new relationship with her fiancé Joseph, then the harsh material conditions of this birth in Bethlehem… and still other surprises: the necessity to flee persecution, and, thirty years later, the strange style that her son’s mission will take. Mary is a woman who will know how to go from surprise to surprise without letting herself be discouraged, because she has faith in this God who is Life.

With faith, Mary went through these surprises. Seeing how her son Jesus was involved in announcing the coming Kingdom of God, she undoubtedly discovered that the blessing transmitted by Moses to Aaron, and to the successive generations of the sons of Israel, is addressed to all mankind. This blessing is reported to us in today’s first reading:May the Lord bless you and keep you! May the Lord make his face shine upon you, may he take you into grace! May the Lord turn his face towards you, may he bring you peace!One can hardly imagine a more solemn blessing: entering into the intimacy of the Lord and living in this peace which comes from Him. This is the perspective which opens up before us at this Christmas time and which unfolds in the liturgical seasons which we live each year in celebrating the passion, the resurrection and the gift of the Spirit. We know that this route is a source of life. We, in turn, want to bear witness to this peace that comes from God, but we must also be lucid in the face of the wars that tear so many nations apart, the injustices that hurt so many people in our own countries, the tensions that trouble our communities or our families. All these situations push us to take our responsibilities: it is not up to us to bring about the peace that comes from God, but we can prepare to welcome it. Let us work by the promise of this peace! May faith in this promise push us to become, ever more, wherever we are, agents of this peace! Let us learn from Mary how to actively wait for the peace that comes from God!

In many countries, the 1er January is a day of celebration. For Christians, the hope of Christmas illuminates their entry into a new year. This hope of Christmas will remain alive in everyone insofar as we open ourselves unceasingly to the presence of God in every human being. Throughout the year 2023, let us therefore keep in our hearts this exclamation of Paul in the extract from the letter to the Galatians read this Sunday: “God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, and this Spirit cries out: “Abba!”, that is to say: Father! So you are no longer a slave, but a son, and since you are a son, you are also an heir: it is the work of God.» Let us keep the hope of Christmas in our hearts, and let ourselves be moved by it day after day throughout the year 2023. Happy New Year!

Meditation on the Solemnity of Saint Mary, Mother of God with Father Antoine Kerhuel, SJ

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Meditation on the Solemnity of Saint Mary, Mother of God: “Let yourself be surprised by God” – Vatican News

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