Call to worship

God comes to us in unexpected ways. As Mary accepted to have the child Jesus born into our world through her body, we can also give birth to Jesus in our world through our open hearts, loving words and welcoming embraces.

  • To the point: God comes. In this annunciation gospel, God establishes a divine dwelling place in a most unexpected place — in the womb of Mary. The Word is made flesh by God’s initiative — it is God-given. By fixing a place (first reading) for divinity in human flesh and blood, God fixes a place for us within the divine embrace. Truly, the Lord is with us.
  • Connecting the Gospel (Luke 1:26-38) to the first reading: In the first reading, David takes the initiative in providing God a suitable dwelling place among the chosen people. God’s response to David is that God will do more for David (build an everlasting dynasty) than David could ever do for God (build a temple). What humans would confine to stones and mortar, God plants in human flesh and blood.
  • Connecting the Gospel to experience: We sense that David’s instinct was good: he lived in a fine house, and he wanted to build the same for God. But our ways are not God’s ways. Nothing we do for God can ever surpass what God does for us.

Centering prayers

The Gospel

(Luke 1: 26-38)

“But she was greatly troubled at what was said
and pondered what sort of greeting this might be.”

Angel and maiden. Their eyes met.
They were unnerved! Unnerved! Both.
She saw heaven in his face, he saw Earth in hers.
“Yes.” She said it for all of us.

“Yes.” Let us say it, every year after year,
summer, fall, winter and spring,
every ordinary minute of every ordinary day.

Can Jesus be at home in our flesh as he was in Mary’s?

The First Reading

(2 Samuel 7: 1-5, 8b-12, 14a, 16)

“And when your time comes and you rest with your ancestors, I will raise up
your heir after you, sprung from your loins, and I will make his kingdom firm.

Love gives. Love makes promises.
David desired to build God a house;
God had begun to build, for Israel, a kingdom.
And would bring it to fullness with a divine descendant.

The Second Reading

(Romans 16: 25-27)

“To him … be glory forever and ever.”

God, our Father, in Christ
you made known your eternal plan to all nations.
You disclosed the mystery.
You spoke the secret: The Word made flesh.
Glory to God in the highest.

Copyright © 2020, Anne M. Osdieck

Reflection and meditation