Vocation Meditation -
4th Sunday of Advent, 2009
During those days Mary set out and traveled to the hill country in haste to a town of Judah, where she entered the house of Zechariah and greeted Elizabeth.
When Elizabeth heard Mary's greeting, the infant leaped in her womb, and Elizabeth, filled with the holy Spirit, cried out in a loud voice and said, "Most blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb. And how does this happen to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? For at the moment the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the infant in my womb leaped for joy. Blessed are you who believed that what was spoken to you by the Lord would be fulfilled."
Rejoice! The Church today cannot but rejoice. The Lord is coming. He is very near! The joyful news surrounding the Messiah's birth was ushered in by this lyrical recount of the blessedness of Mary and Elizabeth and those others God has chosen to be surrounding the Messiah's birth.
To Mary was granted the blessedness of being the Mother of the Son of God.
To Elizabeth was granted the blessedness of being the mother of Jesus' forerunner, even in her old age.
To John the Baptist was granted the blessedness of being sanctified while still in the womb of Elizabeth.
To Joseph was granted the blessedness of being Jesus' foster father and Mary's husband, assured of God's intervention in all that concerns the birth of the Messiah.
To the shepherds was granted the blessedness of first receiving the tidings of great joy from angels glorifying God in the highest.
Faith played a great role in the lives of those God has blessed. God has chosen them to collaborate closely in the manifestation of His saving acts in history. Their positive responses all pointed to the fulfillment of God's promises to His people and His closeness to the poor, the lowly and all with open and longing hearts for the Messiah.
Mary's response was total, life-changing and forever faithful! Truly blessed is she who believed! Her humble yet encompassing response to God captured what humanity was asked all along to give: submission to God's will! With her will in God's, salvation was completely sealed. The Messiah's entry to the world brought a message we all need to hear: Rejoice in the Lord!
"Blessed is she who believed."
In what ways am I truly blessed and can bless others?
You choose the lowly, the open-hearted, and willing hearts to do a special task for the Kingdom. I look at Mary as my other self called to test the waters of Your saving will. My 'Yes' is yours. For blessing my vocation path, I give you thanks. Keep me courageous, faith-filled, and forever rejoicing! Amen.
For the full Gospel reading for this Sunday, visit the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops site.