Call me dangerously distracted, but not until I saw this lovely acrylic painting by Roger Hutchison, a parishioner at Trinity Episcopal Church in Columbia, South Carolina, did I realize why the Saint Andrew’s Christmas Novena also is a novena for couples trying to conceive. How obvious this now all seems.
Mary, a poor unwed teenager, spent the weeks before Christmas Day anticipating the birth of her son, a son conceived “by the Holy Ghost and born of the Virgin Mary.”
As someone who struggled with infertility during her childbearing years, I can say the Christmas season is the worst of all. Everything is centered on a couple joyously awaiting the miraculous birth of their child. Plus, Christmas comes at the end of the calendar year and can be yet another reminder of one’s empty womb.