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Reflection for the Fourth Sunday of Advent

Alice Gazeley, Kingston, Ontario Associate

2 Samuel 7.1-5, 8b-12, 14a, 16 / Romans 

HOW THEN SHALL WE LIVE TODAY? (Orientation, 2016-2021)

How then shall we live this week?  Let us use our Orientation and Mission Vision Statements as our lens. These statements so beautifully reflect the essence of the Beatitudes and our contemplative stance to live with deeper awareness and intentionality. 

What do the weekly messages of Advent have to do with our commitment to live the Annunciation-Visitation (& Pentecost) motif? Wherein lies the link? The messages remind us: of the urgency to be alert at all times, to prepare the way of the Lord and make straight His path, to rejoice that redemption is at hand, and finally, Samuel, Paul, and Luke invite us to rejoice even more fully at God’s revelation of His Divine Plan of Redemption and the integral role Mary is asked to play in that Plan. To help us link the Messages and our Commitment, let us draw upon Sister Marie Azzarello’s book, “Mary, The First Disciple”. Sister asks, “While not forgetting Mary’s unique calling, could we say that what has happened to her has taken place in us also?” Sister points us to our Baptism when we also were chosen, were favoured by God, and when we received birth into new life in Jesus. Like Mary at the Annunciation, the Sacrament of Baptism empowered each of us to live in the Spirit of Jesus. Thus, as Sister suggests, “The Annunciation to Mary becomes every Christian’s story.”  To emphasize this concept, Sister uses a few images, one of which was pregnancy. Using this image, she invites us to ponder the thought that, “Our Christian call, whether we are women or men, is to give birth to Christ again and again”. 

Mary, bursting with joy, rushed to visit Elizabeth.  Immediately, Elizabeth recognized Jesus in Mary’s womb. Do people we meet experience the Spirit of Jesus in us? Do their hearts leap with joy?   Is not every moment of our lives an Annunciation-Visitation (Pentecost) moment?  



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