The Annunciation, 25th of March, 2020 – Ennis Cathedral Via Webcam – Corona Virus
The feast of the annunciation reminds us that it is exactly 9 months to the celebration ofChristmas or the celebration of the Incarnation! It is an up-beat feast of celebration of a new era, a new epoch, a new time of opportunity and beginnings in the drama of salvation history.
God knows, we need an injection of Good News, an injection of hope at this time to give us a lift in these dark days of crisis and challenge!
The Annunciation marked an outstanding beginning, the start of our salvation, the initial “Yes” of Mary in today’s Gospel.
Annunciation – New Years Day
The history of calendars is very interesting and one of the calendars that came into existence at the Council of Tours in 567 AD – the feast of the Annunciation, the 25th of March, the significant day of beginning was designated as new years day! In some countries today still marks the beginning of the financial new year.
In many countries and cultures this day is called “Lady Day”. They say it is a man’s world!!! But with Lady Day today and Mother’s day just last Sunday, perhaps that might not be the case, at least this week!
On the feast of the Annunciation we mark God’s great intervention into human history, when He began to make all things new again.
Theologically and Spiritually
Theologically what we celebrate on this great feast day are two great events of our faith: The Beginning of Salvation and the Great Yes of Mary in response to the gracious invitation of the Angel Gabriel!
St. Ireneus of Lyons
St. Ireneus of Lyons, a 2nd century divine, saw the Conception of Jesus coinciding with the Passion, an interesting observation or pairing of two major hinges of the faith. An interesting link that helps us in our Lenten journey towards the Cross of Jesus Christ and the Passion in a couple of weeks time.
St. Leo the Great
In one of his homilies Saint Leo the Great says, “Thus the Son of God enters this lowly world. He comes down from the throne of heaven, yet does not separate himself from the Father’s glory. He is born in a new condition, by a new birth. He was born in a new condition, for, invisible in his own nature, he became visible in ours. Beyond our grasp, he chose to come within our grasp. Existing before time began, he began to exist at a moment in time. Lord of the universe, he hid his infinite glory and took the nature of a servant. Incapable of suffering as God, he did not refuse to be a man, capable of suffering. Immortal, he chose to be subject to the laws of death.”
Beauty of this feast day!
What a beautiful feast of our Lady this, feast, the Annunciation is!
A traditional hymn for the feast the Annunciation goes back to St Athanasius. It runs:
Today is the beginning of our salvation,
And the revelation of the eternal mystery!
The Son of God becomes the Son of the Virgin
As Gabriel announces the coming of Grace.ay
Together with him let us cry to the Theotokos:[
“Rejoice, O Full of Grace, the Lord is with you!”
Happy Feast Day
On this feast of the Annunciation, on her feast day, we pray the care, protection of Our Lady on us all at this time of challenge and may the assistance and prayers of the Archangel Gabriel go with us as well today and always. Amen!