Saturday March 25, 2023 is the First Class Feast of the Annunciation (Solemnity for those of you still following along with the 1983 home edition). This is the day when we commemorate the moment when the Second Person of the Blessed Trinity took on our flesh and truly “dwelt among us”, as St. John’s Gospel tells us. In the womb of the Blessed Virgin Mary – Fairest of our Race – He Who IS Truth became man by becoming her little boy.
Think about that incredible, indescribable beauty! I think about it at least three times a day when I pray the Angelus. Side note: if you aren’t praying the Angelus, you need to commit to this beautiful prayer. Fr. Ripperger tells us that demonic attack seems to almost disappear when a person commits to commemorating the Incarnation at 6, noon and 6 every day through this prayer.
As I was thumbing through pictures on my phone looking for an appropriate shot for this post, I came across something most interesting. Take a look…
A few years ago I stopped in to the shrine church that had been built under the direction of the saintly Mother Angelica, the foundress of EWTN. Full disclosure, there was a sign nearby strictly forbidding photography. Whoops, huh? “Bless me, Father, for I have sinned…” It’s just that I had a feeling I’d need to use this image one day.
What I did not even catch until now was her full name. She who had been known to the world as – wait for it – RITA Rizzo had taken the name Mary Angelica of the Annunciation! So not only does my favorite saint and patroness, St. Rita, make another appearance but also Mother’s name was in honor of the feast we celebrate today.
And speaking of Mother, I wonder what she would think of the state of the world and of the Church today. I will never forget her “I’m tired” monologue from 1993. I’m embedding it below.
Introduced by a much younger future-Cardinal Timothy Dolan, Mother unleashes on everything wrong at that time. She missed a mark here and there especially when she refers to “those beautiful documents of Vatican II” but I think we can all admit to having been suckered on that front. The documents – presumably the four constitutions – are loaded to the gills with ambiguity at best. Nonetheless, her assessment of the nonsense and her own no-nonsense approach in righteously letting them have it inspire me daily.
Yes, Mother, I’m tired too. But that one event in history, that one instant when light eternal became flesh and blood, when the Most Pure Virgin uttered the words of ultimate humility and thus perfect sanctity – “Ecce, ancilla Domini, FIAT mihi secundum tuum”, “Behold, the handmaid of the Lord, Be it done unto me according to thy word” – reassure me that Truth is knowable and that there is always hope.
Let it be done to me, O Lord, according to Thy Will!
O Mary conceived without sun, pray for us who have recourse to thee!