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Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Patronal Feastday of the United States of America

Scripture Readings: Genesis 3:9-15, 20; Psalms 98:1, 2-3ab, 3bc-4; Ephesians 1:3-6, 11-12; Luke 1:26-38

My dear encountered couples:

What surprises God has in store for you in the future only he knows. Exactly which gifts and what qualities God has placed within you for you to be able to carry out his will during your lifetime here on earth is something that I doubt you are really aware of.

Mary certainly received the surprise of her life. She had no idea that God had equipped her to be the Mother of his Son. That she was brought into this world free from sin and its effects, that she was immaculately conceived, she didn’t know that. She still didn’t know it even after the angel Gabriel let her in on God’s plans. How she was going to be able to do what God was expecting of her she had no idea. She didn’t even know for sure exactly what he was expecting of her. All she had been told was that she was going to have a baby boy and he was to grow up to be someone special. Whether she understood that he would become the looked for Messiah, we do not know. She probably didn’t.

Being the type of person she was, she just gave her “yes” to God and relied on him to help her work out the details. It would be his wisdom and his strength that she would count on to get her through. Other than that she was pretty much in the dark.

That sounds a lot like us, doesn’t it? We might have plans in our minds for the future (I imagine Mary did too), but what our future will really be we don’t know. Only God knows. And he has his preferences which we’ll only find out about as time goes on. Then there are life situations and happenings beyond our control that play a large part in deciding the course of our lives. God foresees all those things, and most likely without stopping them from happening he works his plans into them and around them. We are to be like Mary - willing to do God’s will, even without understanding exactly what is his will, and rely upon his wisdom and strength to do it.

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