In the Heart of
the World

Challenges of Life Today

Day 5: Thursday, Week 1


Mindful of Mary’s freely given assent to God at the Annunciation to become the mother of Jesus, we know that God, inviting us to enter deeply into the mystery of the Annunciation, would never force us to say ‘Yes’.

We should be realistic. Life teaches us that being still, quiet, present to God is not a given, or something automatic. Neither are we excluded from the need to discern the authenticity of the word or the message that rises from within our beings. A second look at Mary at the moment of the Annunciation brings comfort. At first, Mary was afraid when she heard herself addressed as “Favoured one and considered what sort of greeting this might be” (Lk 1:28-29).

We learn that the word “consider” used to describe Mary’s reaction at the Annunciation “derived from the Greek root for “dialogue”. In other words, Mary entered into an interior dialogue with the Word that had been given her as she spoke to it and let it speak to her in order to fathom its meaning.

Engaging in conversation with God and with one another concerning the word heard in the depths of our hearts, discerning its meaning for life as Mary had done, is essential if we are to live out our commitment to be a maternal Church. For our very existence as Christian women and men means that we, like Mary, can be “a dwelling place for God in the world.”



Mandala section created by Rachel



Pope Francis says that it is not the same thing to have known Jesus as not to have known him, not the same thing as to walk with him as to walk blindly, not the same thing to hear his word as not to know it, and not to contemplate him, to worship him, to find our peace in him, as not to. (Pope Francis, The Joy of the Gospel, # 266)

  • How does this statement of Pope Francis ring true in my life?

Our vocation is to be like Mary, “a dwelling place for God in our world”.

  • In what way is this a reality in my life?


God help me to be mindful that the Incarnation of Jesus
continues to live on through me.
May knowing that I am your dwelling place in the world,
lead me to be an attentive,
compassionate person towards all whom I encounter each day.


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