NOTHING WILL BE IMPOSSIBLE FOR GOD

Hi everyone here's my homily for the SOLEMNITY OF THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OF MARY - The readings can be found at  http://usccb.org/bible/readings/120913.cfm.  Many thanks for reading and sharing this blog and your feedback.  God Bless!

Often times we can forget the fact that when were reading scriptures, particularly the Gospel writers aren't on the scene reporters giving us an eyewitness testimony of what they witness.   Biblical experts tell us that the earliest of New Testament writings were probably the letters of St. Paul.  And as the years passed from Jesus death, resurrection and ascension, the pentecost experience with the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on the disciples, the taking shape and steady growth of the early Christian Churches, that eventually these different Church communities started to compile the Christian story - not unlike a family wanting to preserve their family history.

That thought came to mind in a new way praying with this Gospel passage this morning.  Because it's a reminder that Mary had to have been the one who shared one of the most intimate of experiences ever known between humanity and the divine.... her vocation story.   And I can't help but think that of all of the words the angel Gabriel shared with her in this Annunciation, the ones that must have been among the most powerful, most memorable ever spoken were: 

Nothing will be impossible for God

Mary must not only have cherished these words in her heart,
they had to have been a source of comfort...
a remedy to doubt...
an invitation to deeper faith, deeper hope, deeper Love. 

And probably the depth of meaning of those words from their original proclamation to the moment she shared them with the Early Church community must've changed in ways she could never have imagined that day this event took place.  It must be similar to when Grandparents reflecting on their 50th Anniversary of their wedding and think back to what it was like when they became husband and wife and first shared their sacred vows to one another.   On the wedding day, there was joy and excitement; perhaps fear; but the full meaning of for better or worse...sickness and health... good times and bad could only be fully appreciated in retrospect, as the colors of the masterpiece that God envisioned for them on their wedding day come into fuller view.  That's what it must've been for Mary recounting the words of the Angel to her at the Annunciation to the Early Church: 
-       Perhaps she thought about moments after the angel left her and now having to share this heavenly news with Joseph, an upright Jewish man who she loved and who she knew loved her.  In that moment, maybe she wondered "how's he ever going to believe this?"
                        Nothing will be impossible for God
-       The baby is coming - where do we go, what do we do?
                         Nothing will be impossible for God
-       People want to kill this baby as a persecution unfolds through Herods jealous wrath?  What's going to happen to him? To us?
 Nothing will be impossible for God

Throughout her life, as she embraced this divine call, as said yes to God to the vocation of motherhood of Jesus Christ...  She must've had many of these types of moments, and this encounter with this Angel, these heavenly words that she shared with the Church, that St Luke preserved for us for all generations in this family history of ours, had to have been a tremendous source of strength for her. 

They also teach us something important to remember about vocations.  This vocation wasn't God assigning Mary a task and then abandoning her to set about in accomplishing it on her own.  Her vocation was an invitation to be a cooperator, to draw even closer to Him in seemingly impossible ways and to be amazed in the end at all that was accomplished.

That's one reason we call Mary, Mother of priests. That's why Mary is seen as the perfect disciple.   That's why she occupies such a. privileged place in the life of the Church and the life of us Catholic Christians.  She reminds us of that same reality for each of us.  That God is calling you and I to things that might seem outlandish, seem ridiculous, seem ludicrous, seem so outside of what we planned or conceived they might even seem impossible.    


On this great feast of the Immaculate Conception of Mary I pray that all of us take this day to recall how from our conceptions, God too has a plan for us, an invitation for us to serve Him,love Him in a way that only you and I can accomplish... Maybe its a call to Priesthood or religious life.  Maybe its a call to deeper holiness, or more dedicated service.  Maybe its a renewal of what youve been called to already and a reminder that vocation is a precious intimate gift that God has given you but that we need to keep going to him for the instructions on how to fully utilize that gift.   Whatever that is for you and I, may we be open to these plans of God.   As we allow that plan to unfold, may Mary's testimony be a similar comfort to us... May the words spoken to her call us to deeper faith, hope and love... The fullness of which will only truly be understood in retrospect:   Nothing will be impossible for God.

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