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December, 16 2014

4th Sunday of Advent (B)

Deacon Henry Jacquez

Deacon Jacquez is a Deacon of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, serving Holy Trinity parish in Norwood. Deacon Jacquez is a student in Homiletics II. 

 

As a young mother, Judy Newberg used to picket the local abortion clinic. 

Then the Lord began to speak to her of the emotional dilemmas and physical needs

of women who decided NOT to have an abortion. 

 

One night while she was praying she heard God say to her,

“I have a ministry for you”

She replied, “May it be done to me according to your word.”  

And so, Judy Newberg founded “The Inn Ministry”,  

A place for women who were hurt and abused,

abandoned and rejected. 

 

May it be done to me according to your word.

 

The moment I read those words in her story, I could not help but think of the relationship

Judy shared with Our Blessed Mother…………

How many times did Judy pray, Mary’s prayer?

When Mary first spoke those words, her faithfulness, humility, and love for God

began to ECHO the significance of her role throughout time,

not only her role in salvation history, 

but as a model – an example that invites us to faithfulness and prayer--

an invitation to love, in our ordinary daily lives.

 

Mary’s prayer could very well be our prayer.

OUR prayer to God as it was for her and for Judy:

May it be done to me according to your word.”

 

Could we accept and embrace Mary’s prayer in our daily experiences

our daily relationships

in our seeking to do God’s will? 

 

What would that look like?

            As we visit those parishioners home bound

                        or in Hospice care--

                                    When we pray for a friend who has cancer,

                                                When we speak out for pro-life issues,

                                                            Or lend a hand at our local food pantry?

 

In gratitude to Mary,

I ponder….. what this prayer could mean for us

For you and I in our faith journey,

in our relationship with Jesus and our neighbors?

 

Could it possibly empower us to be more open and willing

                        faithful and trusting

                                    more believing………and more loving,  as Mary?

Could we walk her walk?

Could we pray her prayer with confidence and faith,

with that same unconditional love she had for God her Father?

 

Do we have the humility and courage to turn everything over to God

and live the will he specifically created for us?  

The other day I was listening to Fr. Robert Barron’s talk on The New Evangelization - -                             

one thing he mentioned jumped out at me.  

It was his comment:

                        “We should try to lead our families, friends, and neighbors

            toward an encounter with Jesus with the HEART of a Shepherd.”

 

“With the HEART of a Shepherd, I thought.”

My Lord, Mary raised the Good Shepherd!

Her willingness to accept God’s will for her was nurtured in her Son, Jesus, the Good Shepherd.                

Jesus was raised through the prayer and example of Mary--

“May it be done to me according to your word.”

Her prayer to love God was fostered in Jesus.

How many times did Jesus hear his mother pray her prayer?

As she cradled him,

rocked him,

feed him,

bathed him,

dressed him

taught him to walk and pray?

Our Mother, Mary,  from her conception was truly blessed by God the Father to be the Immaculate Conception. 

By our participation in this Holy Mass and by sharing in her prayer, we become partners with her in her remarkable motherhood. 

That allows us through her eternal prayer to open and ponder this invitation to love and to serve--an invitation that can still---STILL touch our hearts today!

 

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