Why did the angel wait to tell Joseph?; Angels: Day 174

St. John Chrysostom  answers an obvious question: why  didn’t the angel tell Joseph about the coming birth of Jesus at the same time he told Mary? In his explanation,  he points out the value of  discretion, not just truth, in choosing what we say and when we say it.It’s worth asking why the angel didn’t speak sooner, before the husband had such thoughts, but came when he thought about it, and not until then—for it is said, “as he considered this,” the angel comes (Matt. 1:20). And yet to her … [Read more...]

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CBB Review – The Church is Our Mother

Review by Michele Craig“A mother journeys with her children all the way through their lives. She does not abandon her maternal mission when they are grown, though that mission certainly takes on different characteristics. The Church, too, accompanies us every step of the way. While baptism gives us birth into the Church, the other sacraments in their own way also nurture our souls as needed.”Gina Loehr continues by explaining how our Mother, the Church, “mothers” us through all of the Hol … [Read more...]

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Hail O favored one; Angels: Day 173

If we imitate the virtues of the Blessed Virgin Mary, says St. Gregory Thaumaturgus, then we, too, will be included in that angelic salutation, “Hail,  O favored one!”With what spiritual song or word shall we honor her who is most glorious among the angels? She is planted in the house of God like a fruitful olive that the Holy Spirit overshadowed; and by means of her we are called sons and heirs of the kingdom of Christ. She is the ever-blooming paradise of incorruptibility, in which is plan … [Read more...]

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The perplexity of Gabriel; Angels: Day 172

We find it easy to imagine how amazed Mary was by the Annunciation. But what was Gabriel thinking? St. Gregory, known as the Wonder-Worker,  imag- ines Gabriel’s  perplexity when he’s given his assignment. The mystery  of  the Incarnation is as baffling to archangels as it is to humans (1 Peter 1:12).“Speak in the ears of my rational Ark” (God said to Gabriel), “to prepare a way for me in her hearing. But do not disturb or trouble the soul of the Virgin. Show yourself in a way befitting that … [Read more...]

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We add our praise to Gabriel’s; Angels: Day 171

St. Gregory the Wonder-Worker  invites us to join our voices to the angel Gabriel’s. When we look at what graces were given to Mary,  we can only say along with Gabriel, “Hail,  O favored one, the Lord is with you!”David and Isaiah and all the prophets foretold the Lord’s becoming man in all their preaching. But you, Holy Virgin—you alone shall receive the mystery unknown by them. Learn, and do not wonder how this can happen to you. For he who made man out of virgin soil, the very same will n … [Read more...]

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Undoing Eve’s damage; Angels: Day 170

The Annunciation, says St. Irenaeus, is more than good news. In her obedience to the word from a good angel, Mary undoes the effects of Eve’s disobedience at the persuasion of a wicked angel.Eve was betrothed to a man, and was unhappily deceived.The Virgin Mary was betrothed to a man as well. The truth happily declared to her by the angel shows that the Lord was coming to what belonged to him, and sustaining them by means of that creation which he himself supports. He was reenacting that … [Read more...]

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