The Word Became Flesh
Annunciation from The Hastings Hours
Annunciation from The Hastings Hours

I experienced a bit of liturgical disorientation tonight. As I was putting Lucia down for the night, I opened up iBreviary to pray evening prayer and started reading about a shoot springing from the root of Jesse. What? That’s an Advent antiphon. Did they mess up?

Then, of course, I remembered that tomorrow, March 25, is the feast of the Annunciation. Well then. That makes sense doesn’t it.

The eternal Word, born of the Father before time began, today emptied himself for our sake and became man.

The funny thing is that this afternoon Anthony found a Christmas book that somehow didn’t get packed away with the rest, A Medieval Christmas with the illustrations from illuminated Books of Hours, and we read about the Annunciation and talked about it at great length. Sophie was especially taken with the symbolism of the herald’s staff in the angel’s hand.

It was one of those sessions where I ask them questions, they ask me questions, intensive catechesis happening on the fly, even Anthony answered some questions. Thinking back on it gives me a little thrill, the timing was so very perfect. I think maybe Mother Mary wanted us to be prepared for her feast. The thought of the day (taken from Bringing Lent Home with St. Therese of Lisieux) is currently posted on our white board: “The Blessed Mother wants to mother us.” And oh yes I think she does. I feel very mothered tonight.

One of my favorite readings is included in tonight’s office: 1 John 1: 1-3

This is what we proclaim to you:
what was from the beginning,
what we have heard,
what we have seen with our eyes,
what we looked upon
and our hands have touched—
we speak of the word of life.
(This life became visible;
we have seen it and bear witness to it
and proclaim to you the eternal life
that was with the Father
and became visible to us.)
What we have seen and heard
we proclaim in turn to you
so that you may share life with us.
This fellowship of ours is with the Father
and with his Son, Jesus Christ.

I think tomorrow we’ll do coloring pages. And contemplate some more art and poetry: This post about Medieval Annunciations looks like a nice place to start and maybe we’ll look at some icons too.

O God, who willed that your Word
should take on the reality of human flesh
in the womb of the Virgin Mary,
grant, we pray,
that we, who confess our Redeemer to be God and man,
may merit to become partakers even in his divine nature.
Who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.

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