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 December 18th, 2011 A.D. Fourth Sunday of Advent Luke 1/26-8

Catholic Homilies

December 18th, 2011 A.D.

Fourth Sunday of Advent Luke 1/26-8

"For with God nothing will be impossible"

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 Father Raymond Brown in his masterful book on the Infancy Narratives says that these stories are “theologumena,” not so much literal history but stories with a theological point – the other gratuitous and revolutionary impact of Jesus’s birth life and death. It is perhaps not too necessary to fixate on this point.

 People love the Christmas stories because of their beauty and their hopefulness and their excitement. In fact, we do not know how they were put together or where they come from or how they got into the Gospels. It is certainly not forbidden to think that there might be a good deal more history in them that we are able to prove. But the important point is that they are stories of God’s love and of Jesus role in history and that’s what counts, not historical details. One element is literally true, however.  The story teller puts on Mary’s lips the totally accurate prediction (which perhaps the real Mary would not have dared to say) that all nations would call her blessed. They sure have.

 Fr. Greeley's Last Book:Chicago Catholics and the Struggle with Their Church

00spc.gif (820 bytes) Story:

 Once upon a time there was a woman who hated children. He had been raised in a large family where there were constant fights between the parents, between parents and children, and among the children. She did not want to be any part of a family like that ever again in her life. Kids were noisy, obnoxious brats. They were messy, ungrateful, dishonest. From the moment of conception till you finally got rid of them when you sent them off to college, they caused nothing but pain. And they fought with you for the rest of your life and broke your heart.

 Her friends who had children said that her picture of children was incomplete. They were also wonderful, even if they were often pesky brats. Her husband wanted children desperately, but she told him that he wanted them so much he should find himself another wife. Well, one day she found that something had gone wrong and she was pregnant. She instantly thought about having and abortion to get rid of the child before anyone found out about it. She hesitated.

You ought to take a chance with the kid, one of her friends – the only to whom she had told the bad news advised her. She even went to see a doctor about an abortion, but then she changed her mind at the last minute and decided to take a chance. Every woman how ever becomes pregnant takes a chance, her friend said. Well, you know what happened. You’d think she’d invented motherhood! Moreover she was a very good mother and did not repeat the mistakes of the family in which she was raised. Her children adored her.

Mary took a chance too, not utterly different from the one every mother takes. That is the nature of life, of responding to the kingdom, to seize the rich opportunities it offers us.


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Mary took a chance too, not utterly different from the one every mother takes. That is the nature of life, of responding to the kingdom, to seize the rich opportunities it offers us
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Psalm 89:1-5,27-29

1 I will sing of your steadfast love, O LORD, forever; with my mouth I will proclaim your faithfulness to all generations.
2 I declare that your steadfast love is established forever; your faithfulness is as firm as the heavens.
3 You said, "I have made a covenant with my chosen one, I have sworn to my servant David:
4 'I will establish your descendants forever, and build your throne for all generations.'" Selah
5 Let the heavens praise your wonders, O LORD, your faithfulness in the assembly of the holy ones.
27 I will make him the firstborn, the highest of the kings of the earth.
28 Forever I will keep my steadfast love for him, and my covenant with him will stand firm.
29 I will establish his line forever, and his throne as long as the heavens endure.

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Catholic publishing eminence Leach asks, and answers, a good question that the nation’s second largest non-congregation – the church of ex-Catholics poses.
This book has a chapter about Fr. Greeley and is dedicated to him. Great read!
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