Feast of the Immaculate Conception

Deel Op

Feast of the Immaculate Conception of Mary


First Reading

Genesis 3,9-15.20

But Yahweh God called to the man. 'Where are you?' he asked. 'I heard the sound of you in the garden,' he replied. 'I was afraid because I was naked, so I hid.' 'Who told you that you were naked?' he asked. 'Have you been eating from the tree I forbade you to eat?' The man replied, 'It was the woman you put with me; she gave me some fruit from the tree, and I ate it.' Then Yahweh God said to the woman, 'Why did you do that?' The woman replied, 'The snake tempted me and I ate.' Then Yahweh God said to the snake, 'Because you have done this, Accursed be you of all animals wild and tame! On your belly you will go and on dust you will feed as long as you live. I shall put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers; it will bruise your head and you will strike its heel.' The man named his wife 'Eve' because she was the mother of all those who live.

Psalmody

Psalm 97

Antiphon

Shout and sing praises to the Lord.

Sing a new song to the Lord
for he has worked wonders.

His right hand and his holy arm
have brought salvation.

The lord has made known his salvation;
has shown his justice to the nations.

He has remembered his truth and love
for the house of Israel.

All the ends of the earth have seen
the salvation of our god.

Shout to the Lord all the earth,
ring out your joy.

Sing Psalms to the Lord with the harp
with the sound of music.

With trumpets and the sound of the horn
acclaim the Kind, the Lord.

Let the sea and all within it, thunder;
the world, and all its peoples.

Let the river clap their hands
and the hills ring out their joy

at the presence of the Lord : for he comes,
he comes to rule the earth.

He will rule with the world with justice
and the peoples with fairness.

Second Reading

Ephesians 1,3-6.11-12

Blessed be God the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with all the spiritual blessings of heaven in Christ. Thus he chose us in Christ before the world was made to be holy and faultless before him in love, marking us out for himself beforehand, to be adopted sons, through Jesus Christ. Such was his purpose and good pleasure, to the praise of the glory of his grace, his free gift to us in the Beloved, And it is in him that we have received our heritage, marked out beforehand as we were, under the plan of the One who guides all things as he decides by his own will, chosen to be, for the praise of his glory, the people who would put their hopes in Christ before he came.

Reading of the Gospel

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

The Spirit of the Lord is upon you.
The child you shall bear will be holy.

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

Luke 1,26-38

In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent by God to a town in Galilee called Nazareth, to a virgin betrothed to a man named Joseph, of the House of David; and the virgin's name was Mary. He went in and said to her, 'Rejoice, you who enjoy God's favour! The Lord is with you.' She was deeply disturbed by these words and asked herself what this greeting could mean, but the angel said to her, 'Mary, do not be afraid; you have won God's favour. Look! You are to conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you must name him Jesus. He will be great and will be called Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his ancestor David; he will rule over the House of Jacob for ever and his reign will have no end.' Mary said to the angel, 'But how can this come about, since I have no knowledge of man?' The angel answered, 'The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will cover you with its shadow. And so the child will be holy and will be called Son of God. And I tell you this too: your cousin Elizabeth also, in her old age, has conceived a son, and she whom people called barren is now in her sixth month, for nothing is impossible to God.' Mary said, 'You see before you the Lord's servant, let it happen to me as you have said.' And the angel left her.

 

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

Look down, O Lord, on your servants.
Be it unto us according to your word.

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

Homily

The passage of Genesis recounts, in symbolic language, the origins of human history: Adam and Eve betray God's love. This account unveils the mystery of that sin, called original sin, in the sense that it is at the origin of evil, even the evil of our time, even the evil of these days. The image of the serpent means that 'the' tempter lies within the very heart of human beings and pushes them to be, at any cost, like God. In short, we are all tempted to feel masters not only of ourselves but also of others: "You will be like God." But here is Mary, whom the Church makes us contemplate from conception. She was preserved from original sin, from that instinct of self-love that wounds every person, in order to be able to welcome the Son of God. With Mary, therefore, the tragic chain that binds men and women to violence and sin is broken. Mary begins a new page in human history, that of a friendship with God, even more beautiful than that which the progenitors had in the Garden of Eden before sin. Of course, she was conceived without sin by grace, not by merit. Certainly, Mary fully accepted to become Jesus' mother. It was not easy, nor was her acceptance granted. When the angel brought her God's greeting, Mary was perplexed. Contrary to the feelings that generally dwell in our hearts, Mary did not think highly of herself.
At the words of the angel, Mary did not exalt herself. Instead, she was perplexed. So it should be for us each time we listen to the Gospel. However, the angel comforts Mary, "Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favour with God. And now, you will conceive a son... and [you] will name him Jesus" (v. 30-31). We cannot know what Mary's thoughts were at that moment. She could say "No" and go on with her quiet life of always; if she said "Yes," her entire life would be turned upside down. Unlike us, Mary does not depend on her own strength but only on the Word of God, and therefore she says, "Here am I, the servant of the lord; let it be with me according to your word."