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Chúa Nhật 4 Mùa Vọng Năm B

Thứ sáu - 19/12/2014 18:20 | Đã xem: 997
Fourth Sunday of Advent, Cycle B
Memory Verse
The holy Spirit will come upon you,
and the power of the Most High will overshadow you.
Therefore the child to be born will be called holy, the Son of God."
Luke 1:35
Gospel (Luke 1:26-38)
26 In the sixth month, the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a town of Galilee called Nazareth, 27 to a virgin betrothed to a man named Joseph, of the house of David, and the virgin’s name was Mary. 28 And coming to her, he said, “Hail, favored one! The Lord is with you.” 29 But she was greatly troubled at what was said and pondered what sort of greeting this might be. 30 Then the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. 31 Behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall name him Jesus. 32 He will be great and will be called Son of the Most High, and the Lord God will give him the throne of David his father, 33 and he will rule over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.” 34 But Mary said to the angel, “How can this be, since I have no relations with a man?” 35 And the angel said to her in reply, “The holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. Therefore the child to be born will be called holy, the Son of God. 36 And behold, Elizabeth, your relative, has also conceived a son in her old age, and this is the sixth month for her who was called barren; 37 for nothing will be impossible for God.” 38 Mary said, “Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord. May it be done to me according to your word.” Then the angel departed from her.
Background on the Gospel Reading
This Sunday we read the story of the angel Gabriel's announcement to Mary about the birth of Jesus. This story is found only in Luke's Gospel. On this fourth Sunday of Advent, the liturgy shifts our attention from John the Baptist to Mary, the mother of Jesus. Both John and Mary serve as important figures for our reflection during the season of Advent; they both played instrumental roles in preparing the way for Jesus. Last week we reflected on John the Baptist's announcement that the Savior was among us, although not yet recognized. This week we reflect upon Mary's example of faith and obedience to God, traits which permitted her to receive the angel's message that God's Son would be born as a human person, as one of us. We are familiar with the story of the Annunciation, and it is fitting that we recall how God announced the birth of Jesus as we make our final preparations for our celebration of the Incarnation. The angel Gabriel visited Mary, a virgin betrothed to a man named Joseph. Mary greeted the angel's news with awe and wonder and asked how it could be possible that she could give birth to a child. In his reply, the angel Gabriel announced the seemingly impossible reality: the child to be born would be conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit and would be God's own Son. The angel reported to Mary another miracle; her relative Elizabeth was also pregnant despite having been thought to be unable to have a child. Mary's response to the angel, which is called her fiat, is an example of complete faith and obedience to God. The story of the Annunciation calls to our attention God's wondrous action in human history. God chose a human person to give birth to his Son so that all humanity would know God's salvation. Mary, already full of God's grace, was able to cooperate in this great plan for our salvation. Thus Jesus was born as one of us, fully human and also fully divine. This is the mystery we prepare to celebrate at Christmas, the mystery of the Incarnation. In the model of Mary, we pray that we will be people of faith who recognize God's saving plan for us and are able respond with obedience.
Gospel Reflection
- We heard in the Gospel this week that an angel came from God and told Mary two impossible things were going to happen. - The first thing was that Mary, who was an ordinary girl, had been chosen by God to become the mother of his Son, Jesus. Mary thought this would be impossible because she was not even married yet. But the angel assured her that God has the power to do impossible things. - The other surprise that the angel told Mary was that her relative Elizabeth, who was too old to have a baby, was also pregnant. - Today's Gospel offers to us another example of a person of faith who made an extraordinary contribution to the world: Mary, the mother of Jesus. This Gospel gives us several clues about what prepares a person of faith to do extraordinary things. - It is the Holy Spirit working within us that enables ordinary people to make extraordinary contributions in our world. Because Mary was filled with God's grace, she was able to cooperate with God's plan for salvation by becoming the mother of Jesus. - There are many factors that Mary could have considered in making her reply. However, in accepting God's plan for her, Mary put her faith and trust in God. This faith and trust was her most important consideration.


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Bible Quiz
1. Where did Mary live when the angel Gabriel came to her?
2. Who was Mary engaged (or betrothed or promised) to?
3. How did Mary first respond to the greeting of the angel?
4. What did Mary tell the angel?
5. What did Gabriel tell Mary to name the baby?







Saint Marguerite d’Youville
Feast Day December 24

Name the trouble, and St. Marguerite d’Youville of Quebec, Canada, suffered it: her father’s early death, poverty, an unfaithful husband, a nasty mother-in-law, infant deaths, bankruptcy, fire, ridicule, persecution, and more. Yet Marguerite seems joyfully to have trusted God to carry her through these terrible circumstances.

When Marguerite’s father died in 1714, she left school to help her mother support her family. At 21, she entered a disastrous arranged marriage with François d’Youville, a dashing but irresponsible young fur trader. He got Indians drunk and ripped them off, slept around, and squandered the family fortune. On top of this, four of Marguerite’s six babies died. However, sometime in 1727, Marguerite had an extraordinary personal experience of God the Father’s love for her. That grace enabled her to endure François and his domineering mother without complaint, until his death in 1730 released her.

Marguerite devoted the rest of her life to caring for the poor of Montreal. In 1737, she and three companions made a private commitment to serve the destitute. They rented a house as a place to welcome indigent boarders. When fire destroyed the building in 1745, Marguerite knelt in the ashes, prayed a thankful Te Deum, and promised the poor that she would never abandon them. Shortly after, she and her companions signed the “Original Commitment” which became the basis for her religious order. Here is an excerpt from that document:

We have unanimously agreed and have freely promised:

To live together for the remainder of our lives in perfect union and charity, under the guidance of those superiors who will be given to us, in the practice and faithful observance of the rule prescribed for us . . . in poverty and complete renunciation . . . placing everything we now own and will own in common, not retaining ownership nor any right to dispose of it, making a pure, simple and irrevocable gift of it to the poor by this document. . . .To devote unreservedly our time, our days, our effort, our life itself to work, and, putting the income in common, to provide for the support and maintenance of the poor. To shelter, feed and support as many poor people as we can either by our own means or by the alms of the faithful. All those who will be taken into the house will bring everything they own with them—linens, clothing, furniture and silver, to put everything in common not excepting or retaining anything, renouncing all rights of ownership and of retention, by the voluntary and irrevocable gift they will make of it to the members of Jesus Christ. . . .

So Marguerite began to formalize her little band of associates into a religious community. In 1755 the bishop of Quebec approved the congregation as the Sisters of Charity. They adopted a gray habit and so were called the Grey Sisters. Because drunks often flopped on their doorsteps, persecutors mockingly tagged them “the tipsy sisters,” as the French word gris could mean “drunk” as well as “gray.” After Marguerite’s death in 1771, the Grey Sisters extended her ministry throughout the world, especially to the Inuit people of North America.

Tác giả bài viết: Ban Truyền Thông



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