The Blessed Virgin Mary is visited by the Archangel Gabriel and gives her humble “yes” to God’s desire for her to become the Mother of God. Every Catholic man can grow in happiness by growing in the Virtue of Humility so he can reject pride and do God’s will and by seeking the Fruits of Love, Patience, Kindness and Generosity from the Holy Spirit so he can be a blessing to others. 

Commentary

Having announced the miraculous conception of John the Baptist to the elderly Elizabeth and Zachariah, the Archangel Gabriel now appears to the young virgin Mary (a teenager); a virgin had been prophesized to bear the Messiah (Is 7:14). The Blessed Virgin Mary is betrothed (in Jewish tradition, married but still living separate and celibate) to St. Joseph (most likely in his 30’s), who is of the kingly lineage of King David; the Messiah was prophesized to be born to a descendant of David (2 Sam 7). Both are from Nazareth, a disrespected backwater town in the rural Galilee; Nazareth is prophesized to be where the Messiah will live (Is 11:1; Mt 2:23).

Gabriel, the magnificent archangel, reverently addresses the Blessed Virgin Mary, not by her name, but by a title, “Full of Grace”, meaning God has already graced the Blessed Virgin Mary with Divine Life (she is the Immaculate Conception), and is a worthy vessel for God to Incarnate. Gabriel greets the Blessed Virgin Mary with the phrase, “The Lord be with you”, the same greeting given to God’s great warriors when He calls them to a great task, such as Moses, Gideon, and Joshua. What is this great task? Gabriel tells the Blessed Virgin Mary that the Son of God will be conceived in her womb and she shall name the child, Jesus, meaning “God saves.” Jesus will establish the promised never-ending Kingdom of God.

The Blessed Virgin Mary is greatly troubled, but consoled by the Archangel. Gabriel urges the Blessed Virgin Mary to not be afraid, and that the Holy Spirit will overshadow her, allowing her to conceive the Son of God. “Overshadow” is the same description of God’s presence in the Ark of the Covenant, the Tabernacle in which God resides during the Exodus (Ex 40:35); the Blessed Virgin Mary is the New Tabernacle, and the Son of God will reside in her womb. Mary, the Immaculate Conception, offers the perfect response in her fiat: “I am the handmaid of the Lord, let it be to me according to your word.”

Be awed by Jesus Christ

The mysterious and tremendous power of God is beyond human imagination. Marvel at Jesus, as a Person of the Trinity, has the Divine Power to accomplish mind-bending acts: He creates and inspires Isaiah to prophesize of His Incarnation; He conceives the Blessed Virgin Mary to be the Immaculate Conception, a perfect vessel to carry Him in her womb; He sends the Holy Spirit to allow Mary, a mere human, to supernaturally conceive Him (God).

Reject Pride and grow in Humility

Realize: Be astounded that the Son of God, Who, with the Father from the beginning created all things, is willing to humble Himself to the point of becoming Incarnate within the Virgin Mary.

Believe: Reflect upon the truth that Christ is Born of the Virgin Mary (CCC 484-511).

Pray: Jesus, Perfection of Humility, help me grow in the Virtue of Humility (a part of Temperance) so I reject pride, I recognize my spiritual poverty, and I always seek to imitate the Your humility.

Seek the Fruits of the Spirit to imitate Our Lady

Realize: Born in Original Sin, it is impossible for men to fully imagine what life must be like without sin.

Believe: Reflect upon Mary Full of Grace (CCC 721-726, 744) and Original Sin (CCC 396-409, 416-419).

Pray: Holy Spirit, give me the Fruits of Love, Patience, Kindness, and Generosity so I can better imitate Your beautiful Virgin Mother and be a blessing to my family, my friends, and many other souls.