SEPTEMBER 8. Birthday of Mary. Mt 1. 18-23
This is how Jesus Christ came to be born. His mother Mary was betrothed to Joseph; but before they came to live together she was found to be with child through the Holy Spirit. Her husband Joseph; being a man of honour and wanting to spare her publicity, decided to divorce her informally. He had made up his mind to do this when the angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, ‘Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because she has conceived what is in her by the Holy Spirit. She will give birth to a son and you must name him Jesus, because he is the one who is to save his people from their sins.’ Now all this took place to fulfil the words spoken by the Lord through the prophet:
The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son
and they will call him Emmanuel,
a name which means ‘God-is-with-us.’
We often forget God’s power to override not only his own laws but also the laws made by man, and we have a wonderful example of him exercising this power in selecting a woman to be the mother of his only Son Jesus Christ.
The divine law is that the only way a child can be conceived is by way of a union between a man and a woman, and it is certainly not possible, within the laws of nature, for a woman to conceive a child while a virgin.
These are divine laws which God decided to override in order to implement his grand designs.
We have to give thanks to our Creator for his willingness to do this and there are many examples where mankind has benefited from his generosity.
And today’s birthday of the Blessed Virgin Mary is one of those days; - where divine laws were abandoned; - in order to allow Mary to be conceived without sin; - a gift only made possible because God abandoned his own laws!
And we must not forget, God the Father did not do this in order to benefit himself; - in fact the effect of this decision; - for Mary being born without sin; - was the second person of the Blessed Trinity would undergo immense pain, and die while nailed to a cross!
And we also need to pause and reflect on the impact of Mary’s birth across the generations.
Jesus Christ would not have become man!
There would be no Church or Sacraments!
There would be no forgiveness of sin!
There would be no Holy Eucharist!
We would have no access to eternal life!
And we would have no Mother in Heaven interceding on our behalf!
A Birthday we truly have good reason to celebrate, and give thanks for!
Happy are you, holy Virgin Mary, deserving all praises;
from you rose the sun of justice, Christ the Lord.
First reading Romans 8:28-30 · Those he called, he justified
We know that by turning everything to their good, God co-operates with all those who love him, with all those he has called according to his purpose.
They are the ones he chose specially long ago and intended to become true images of his Son, so that his Son might be the eldest of many brothers.
He called those he intended for this; those he called he justified, and with those he justified he shared his glory.