Thursday, December 21, 2017

Thursday of the Fourth Week of Advent

(Song of Songs 2:8-14; Luke 1:39-45)

“Come Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithful and kindle in them the fire of your love.”  If we don’t pray this prayer every day, we are likely missing out on many blessings.  The Spirit’s thrust is vividly seen in today’s gospel.

In the previous passage Mary received the Holy Spirit.  She was overshadowed by God’s life-giving love to accept His Son in her womb.  She also was moved to visit her relative Elizabeth who may need assistance with her improbable pregnancy.  When Mary arrives at Elizabeth’s door, the Spirit acts visibly again.  The elderly woman blesses her visitor while the fetus within her jumps for joy.  The blessing not only gives Mary due praise, it also bestows on her a new identity.  She is “the mother of (our) Lord.”

The Spirit is palpably active among us at Christmas.  It inspires us to remember the many blessings we have received through the years.  It moves us to reflect on the mystery of God’s love being retold once again.  It sends us out to those in need.