12-23-2018 Reflection

Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb.

What is your definition of a practicing Roman Catholic? Perhaps we would say that this is someone who attends Mass every Sunday and Holy days of obligation, goes to Confession regularly, participates in the life of the parish, fosters a spiritual life of prayer and ongoing formation in the faith, follows the teachings of the Catholic faith and leads others to Jesus (evangelizes). Wow, that seeems like a thorough list!

It has been said that an average piano player practices thousands of hours to be average. However, a superb piano player practices countless more hours to be superb. In a similar way, we should commit our time and energy to the “practice” of our Catholic faith, so that it becomes “second nature”. We will then be more prepared to recognize Jesus Christ in our midst.

We hear in today’s gospel: Elizabeth filled with the Holy Spirit, cried out in a loud voice and said, “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?

Elizabeth recognized Jesus in her midst.

Mary’s fiat – her “yes” to God to be the bearer of the Messiah was a lifelong “yes”, rooted in an uninterrupted practice of knowing and responding

to the will of God. Mary echos what we read in the Letter to the Hebrews: “Behold, I come to do your will.” Mary was the first bearer of Jesus to others. Mary burned with a desire to bring Jesus to her cousin, Elizabeth. We too must be the bearer of Jesus to others – sharing His love.

May God bless us all always!
Deacon Mike