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All Issues > Volume 20, Issue 1


<< Monday, December 8, 2003 >> Immaculate Conception
 
Genesis 3:9-15, 20
Ephesians 1:3-6, 11-12

View Readings
Psalm 98
Luke 1:26-38

Similar Reflections
 

HOPE — EVEN UNDER THE CIRCUMSTANCES

 
God "chose us in Him before the world began, to be holy and blameless in His sight." —Ephesians 1:4
 

The Lord created the human race to be with Him in Paradise. However, because of the original sin, we:

  • lost Paradise,
  • severely wounded our human nature,
  • fell from God's grace, and
  • brought into our lives fear (Gn 3:10), shame (Gn 3:10), blame (Gn 3:12ff), pain (Gn 3:16, 19), violence (Gn 4:8), death (see Rm 6:23), self-deception, self-hatred, slavery, alienation, even damnation, and so much more.

Original sin is the most depressing fact of life. When we realize this, we cry out: "What a wretched man I am! Who can free me from this body under the power of death?" (Rm 7:24) Jesus Christ alone has freed us from original sin and its devastating effects. In fact, Jesus freed His mother Mary from ever having original sin. She was immaculately conceived. Mary is therefore "a sign of sure hope" (see Lumen Gentium, 68) for all of us that original sin with its death and damnation need not be the final word. Jesus is Lord of all, including original sin. "He is always able to save those who approach God through Him" (Heb 7:25). Jesus is our Lord and Savior. Mary Immaculate is a sign of hope pointing us to her Son, Jesus. No matter how shattered your life, broken your world, and sinful your society, look to Jesus and rejoice.

 
Prayer: Father, on this holy day, make me immaculate as I repent of my sins, confess them, and receive Your forgiveness.
Promise: "Nothing is impossible with God." —Lk 1:37
Praise: Mary Immaculate is a sure sign of the sovereignty of her Son Jesus as Lord of life and Lord of time.
 
(For a related teaching, order our tape Hope for the Hopeless on audio AV 63-1 or video V-63.)
 
 
Nihil obstat: Reverend Robert A. Stricker, June 23, 2003
Imprimatur: †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, June 26, 2003
 
The Nihil obstat and Imprimatur are a declaration that a book or pamphlet is considered to be free from doctrinal or moral error. It is not implied that those who have granted the Nihil obstat and Imprimatur agree with the contents, opinions, or statements expressed.
Volume 20, Issue 1
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