MEDITATION AS A PREPARATION FOR THE SOLEMNITY OF THE ANNUNCIATION OF THE B.V.M., March 25, 2007

Mary

by Fr. Donald Calloway, MIC

It has always occurred to me that the mystery of the Incarnation, which we celebrate on the Solemnity of the Annunciation, shows the world just how much God loves life and especially babies. Think about it. In all the many ways that God could have sent His Eternal Son into the world to redeem it, in His Divine Providence He chose to have His Eternal Son be born of the Immaculately Conceived Virgin Mary and come into the world as a tiny, precious, adorable baby! Isn't that wonderful! As the Creed tells us, God's Holy Spirit is the "Lord and Giver of Life". How adorable baby Jesus must have been with his little divine chubby cheeks, toes, and tummy! The angels surely were in awe and adoration as Mary received the Father's Son into her womb and carried Him for nine months until He was born into the world on that first Christmas! This is why the Annunciation is exactly nine months before the Solemnity of Christmas.

Another cause for joy and life has occurred in our own day. As you may be aware, the Founder of the Marians, Fr. Stanislaus of Jesus and Mary Papczyński, will be beatified on September 16th of this year at the Marian Shrine of Our Lady of Lichen in Poland! The Marians have waited a very long time for such a joyful event, and it would seem that God has once again shown His goodness and love for life and infants in the womb by the nature of the miracle that was worked through the intercession of the soon to be 'Blessed' Stanislaus of Jesus and Mary Papczyński.

As one who was very much in love with the mystery of the Incarnation of Jesus and the Immaculate Conception of Our Lady, Fr. Papczyński himself must be singing the praises of the "Lord and Giver of Life" due to the kind of miracle that God worked through his intercession. Indeed, God could have worked any number of miracles that would have raised Fr. Papczyński to the honors of the altar. However, Divine Providence decided that it would be through a pro-life miracle! It is such a joy to know that Fr. Papczyński will be known as a helper in the pro-life cause! So, what was the nature of the miracle?

It has been affirmed by Pope Benedict XVI himself that Fr. Papczyński is to be acknowledged as having interceded for a pregnant mother in Poland who, during the first months of her pregnancy, experienced the death of the child in her womb, only to have the child come back to life after the mother and her cousin offered many prayers to Fr. Papczyński for the life of the child! Isn't this amazing! Indeed, this type of miracle could be classified as a 'resurrection in the womb'! God surely loves life, especially babies in the womb!

As members of the Confraternity of the Immaculate Conception, let us celebrate with increased fervor the Incarnation of God's Son during the Solemnity of the Annunciation, and also give thanks to Almighty God for allowing the Church to raise to the honors of the altar a new Blessed for our times, Blessed Stanislaus of Jesus and Mary Papczyński, a man deeply in love with the mystery of life!