Day: March 28, 2017

Hail Mary, Full of Grace!

   (c)Mateo Ivankovic 2017   J.M.J. March 28, 2017 Dear Family of Mary! “Dear children! In this time of grace, I am calling all of you to open your hearts to God’s mercy, to begin a new life through prayer, penance and a decision for holiness. This time of spring moves you to a new life, to a renewal, in your thoughts and hearts. Therefore, little children, I am with you to help you to say ‘yes’ to God and to God’s commandments with resoluteness. You are not alone; I am with you through the grace which the Most High gives me for you and your descendants. Thank you for having responded to my call.” (March 25, 2017) “Therefore, little children, I am with you to help you to say ‘yes’ to God and to God’s commandments with resoluteness.” There is no one else who can better help us to say ‘yes’ to God! Our Lady is the perfect example, held aloft by the Father for us to emulate. She can help us learn to say ‘yes’ to the Lord in every situation. We have only to turn to her for strength and discernment! Fr. Leon gave an astounding homily on the Feast of the Annunciation of the Lord. He explained so many things about Our Lady and Jesus so clearly. I would like to share the transcript today. It deserves a very careful reading!! Fr. Leon Pereira, Homily at English Mass in Medjugorje, March 25, 2017: In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, Amen. The Liturgy around Christmas time calls Our Lady “You who have destroyed all the surrounding heresies.” It is a very strange thing to say. But also a beautiful thing to say about Our Lady. Our Lady is the Destroyer of Heresies. And she is the Destroyer of Heresies by simply being who and what she is. Because she is the Mother of God. Full stop. Period, as the Americans might say. Because she is the Mother of God. Now every heresy in the end is the denial that Jesus is truly human. Or it is the denial that He is truly God. Or a denial that He is both. Every heresy in the end boils down to this. But Our Lady is the guarantee of this truth. That the Word became flesh. Became flesh of her flesh, and was born of her. Therefore, she is the Destroyer of all Heresies. And we need her intercession especially in our own time when men, as Scripture says, have itching ears and run after all sorts of strange doctrines. Now the idea that God became a baby is a strange one. In all the pagan kind of myths, the gods who become human – for example in Hinduism the Avatars as we say in English, the Avatarum in Sanskrit – it just means that they take on a human appearance, they live among human beings and have adventures, and when it is all done they go back up to heaven and abandon their physical bodies. So in a way it is not really an incarnation at all. It’s kind of playing a little joke. And at the end of it you go back up. It’s a bit like you as an adult when you are playing with children, you can be childish and play with them. And then when you finish the game you go back to being an adult. You were never a child; you were never one of them. Ever. (Well a long time ago but you have forgotten what it is to be innocent.) But when God becomes a human being, He does this really and truly. In a serious way, He does not abandon His body. He rises again from the dead, still with the holes in His hands and feet. And then He takes His body and human soul up to heaven to the right hand of the Father at the Ascension. So Jesus shows that He takes our physicality seriously. Why does He do this? Could God have saved us in another way? Did Jesus have to die on the Cross? Well He’s God, right? And God can do anything? He can save us any way He wants. But what does Scripture tell us, “God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son.” The word ‘so’ there meaning ‘thus’. God loved the world ‘this way’, that He gave His Son to die for us on the Cross. That’s how God loves us. He could have done it any way, but He chose this way. And He shows us therefore, He shows us therefore that our bodies are serious matters. He takes our physicality seriously. It is not a joke to Him. In Christian tradition we piously believe – you know the beginning of the Letter to the Hebrews, it says that God brings His Son forth and tells the angels, now let all the angels of God worship Him. And we piously believe that this is when Lucifer and all the angels that followed him rebelled. They said, “No, You shouldn’t become a man! You shouldn’t be born of a woman! Implicit in this is that Lucifer was saying, “I will never say to a woman, “Hail full of grace!” And this, we piously believe, is the rebellion of Satan and the demons. A rejection of the Incarnation! So it is no surprise that in our world today, the blasphemies uttered against Our Lady arise because they are demon inspired, demon goaded. Terrible things said about Our Lady. But also the rejection of the Incarnation.  How is the incarnation rejected in our modern world?   Whenever you see body and soul divided, so they pretend that we are just mostly souls and our bodies are irrelevant, so they talk about reincarnation and all that sort of thing.  Or they pretend we are just bodies without souls: do what you like, more or less.  It’s your body.  Your body is your instrument, do what you like with it, have a tattoo, pierce it in all sorts of disgusting places and all that business.  Or the separation of body and soul in our philosophies, in illnesses, anorexia, bulimia, in illnesses of the soul, pornography. All of these things are rejections of the Incarnation.  All of them are leaning towards the devil saying, “I will never say to a woman, ‘Hail full of grace.’ And that’s why we say “Hail full of grace!  The Lord is with you.”  The Lord is with you as a baby, with human hands and human feet and a human heart – a divine human heart. This is what we are saying: the glory and joy of being able to say a single Hail Mary.  Isn’t it marvelous!  This is what the demons will not and cannot say.  But we, through the Holy Spirit can say this.  And we are made sharers of this joy.  Something new comes into being when Our Lady says, “Behold I am the Handmaid of the Lord. Be it done unto me according to your word.” Do you remember, how does Genesis begin?  God says, “Let there be light.”  “Fiat.”  “Let there be light.  And a new creation comes into being.  When Our Lady says, “Let it be done to me,” again “fiat.”  A new creation comes into being. And just in case you’ve missed it, Luke tells us, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you and the power of the Most High will overshadow you.” Where have you heard that before?  The Holy Spirit will overshadow you.  It’s one word in Hebrew… “RHP” (RaHap)….  It means: like a bird, a mother hen brooding over something – over her chicks, but in this case brooding over the waters.  Genesis: The Holy Spirit broods over the waters and everything comes to be.  In the same way, the Holy Spirit broods over Our Lady and a new creation comes into being when she says “Fiat”. The Annunciation is an astounding dialogue.  It is a conversation between God – a courteous conversation – between God and a human being, saying, “Would you kindly be the mother of my Son?”  And she says, “I am your servant, I am your slave.  Be it done unto me according to your word.”  It’s a beautiful conversation.  And He tells us for our sake, He greets Our Lady for what she is.  He says, “Hail full of grace.”  In Greek you could I suppose translate as, “Rejoice gorgeous! – Rejoice beautiful one! – Rejoice grace filled one!”  And He tells her this for our sake because through her God has destroyed all the heresies and will continue to destroy every single one of them until the end of time.  In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.  Amen! You can listen to Fr. Leon give this homily at this link:  Look for “English Homily 03/25/2017” in the play list. One comment. What Father says is so powerful!! It occurred to me that the Rosary IS the most powerful prayer besides the Mass. With every Hail Mary, we are aiming a blow at the head of Satan, because we say and believe what He rejected. (The late Fr. Gabriel Amorth -exorcist- always said this!) He lost heaven and all hope because he could not accept the Incarnation nor the Woman who made it possible. And so our prayer of the Rosary is a great protection and weapon against evil. Isn’t God amazing! In Jesus, Mary and Joseph! Cathy Nolan ©Mary TV 2017