how can this be?
"Blest is she who trusted." —Luke 1:45
Once on this feast day, I taught a Bible Study for the clients at a pregnancy center in one of the poorest neighborhoods in Cincinnati. Before a client can receive a distribution of material items from the center, he or she is required to attend a Bible Study, where the spiritual distribution of faith and encouragement occurs. We studied the differences between Mary's reaction (Lk 1:34) to the annunciation of Jesus' conception and birth as compared to Zechariah's reaction (Lk 1:18) to the annunciation of St. John the Baptist's conception and birth.
Though a teenager lacking the formal education of Zechariah the priest, Mary had no doubt that God was almighty and could do anything. Mary's questioning focused on "how" God was going to make this conception happen. On the other hand, Zechariah, the well-educated priest stationed in God's temple, doubted that God could do what the angel was saying. Mary and Zechariah asked questions that sounded similar. However, the hidden condition of their hearts was laid bare in the angel's reaction. In addition, Mary's response of traveling ninety miles "in haste" (Lk 1:39) to bring help and encouragement to the elderly Elizabeth during the end of her pregnancy gives evidence of her belief in God's promises.
Today, lift up in prayer all women who will find out this day that they are pregnant. Some will be well-educated, some not. Pray that their reaction will be one of expectant faith and hope, trusting that God has great things in mind for them and for their unborn child.
Prayer: Father, in Your eyes, there is no such thing as an unplanned pregnancy. Pour out a love of life onto our nation today.
Promise: "Do not grow slack but be fervent in spirit." —Rm 12:11
Praise: Mary's kindness toward her elderly relative helped release the power of the Holy Spirit into the world (Lk 1:41ff).
Reference: (This teaching was submitted by a member of our editorial team.)
Rescript: †Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, November 2, 2012
The Nihil Obstat ("Permission to Publish") is a declaration that a book or pamphlet is considered to be free of doctrinal or moral error. It is not implied that those who have granted the Nihil Obstat agree with the contents, opinions, or statements expressed.