An immaculate moment: Weekly Message for 12-05-2023

Dear Friends in Christ,

When we look up and around us, we see all kinds of signs of God’s wonderful creative power. From the fantastically shaped nebulae in interstellar space, to the glow of a baby’s smile, we see reflections of the Almighty’s beauty.

This week we will celebrate the moment of one of his outstanding creations: the immaculate conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary. God created Our Lady without stain of original sin from the moment of her conception, in part to prepare her for her unique role as Mother of the Savior.

Tellingly, God’s plan for Mary wasn’t a political plan or an economic proposal. Rather, the plan was spiritual, aimed at people’s redemption and the call to holiness. The fight was about good vs. evil, not conservative vs. progressive.

In an age of seemingly nonstop polemics and polarization, the Blessed Virgin’s example reminds us of what humans were originally meant to be: sinless, selfless and dedicated to God’s will at every moment.

As the Christmas holidays approach and some households brace for tension-filled family reunions, it is a good moment to keep focused on the deep matters that unites us: our shared humanity and God’s ideal plan for our eternal destiny.

To prepare for Christmas—and to keep family reunions from becoming a fireworks show—you might consider praying with our Advent Retreat Guide on St. John of the Cross.

This could be an opportune season to help lift the gazes of loved ones to a horizon far above the fray of the world.

May all our readers have a blessed Advent.

In Christ,

Father Edward McIlmail, LC
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