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Advent Devotional 12-8-2023

Good morning!  Our Advent Devotional for today was written by Monica Nieto.  Monica is a senior Strategic Communications major from Cedar Hill, TX, and currently serves as the President of TCU Catholic, where she has done wonderful work to lead one of our largest campus ministries at TCU.  With a warm heart, welcoming smile, and a gentle spirit, Monica embodies what it means to radiate HOPE to those around her.  You need only to read her devotional below to understand the source of that HOPE, as you reflect on what it means to embody HOPE in your own life during this season of Advent.  May we all radiate that HOPE as enter into today and the weekend ahead.

Luke 1:26-38

 The angel Gabriel was sent from God to a town of Galilee called Nazareth, to a virgin betrothed to a man named Joseph, of the house of David, and the virgin’s name was Mary. And coming to her, he said, “Hail, full of grace! The Lord is with you.” But she was greatly troubled at what was said and pondered what sort of greeting this might be. Then the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. Behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall name him Jesus. He will be great and will be called Son of the Most High, and the Lord God will give him the throne of David his father, and he will rule over the house of Jacob forever, and of his Kingdom there will be no end.” But Mary said to the angel, “How can this be, since I have no relations with a man?” And the angel said to her in reply, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. Therefore the child to be born will be called holy, the Son of God. And behold, Elizabeth, your relative, has also conceived a son in her old age, and this is the sixth month for her who was called barren; for nothing will be impossible for God.” Mary said, “Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord. May it be done to me according to your word.” Then the angel departed from her.

The Annunciation of Mary is a beautiful story of hope. Mary’s Fiat or her “yes” is a perfect example of how easy it is to truly hope in the Lord and his goodness. When the Angel Gabriel appeared to Mary and proclaimed that she would bear a son and name him Jesus, she was troubled. But, instead of dwelling on her anxieties, Mary rejoiced in the Lord’s invitation to have hope. This is what the Lord is calling all of us to do––have hope in Him and His plan for us. Hope is the cornerstone of our faith and is at the root of the nativity story and Advent season. The Lord humbled himself to become man, to bring the hope of forgiveness of sins and the resurrection so we may experience eternal life in heaven with God.

One of my favorite parts of Advent is meditating on Jesus being a child. He was in need of constant love and care from Our Blessed Mother and St. Joseph. Even being the Son of God,  His need for parental love and care didn’t change. In this way, we are like Jesus. We are in need of agape love and care of the Father. He designed our hearts to yearn for Him and his holiness. This is hope written on our hearts.

 This advent season, I’m walking with Mary and asking her to help me know her son as the Hope of the World. I want to grow in childlike dependency on the Lord while waiting in anticipation for Him to come. Mary’s desire for all of us is to fall deeper in love with her son, especially during this time.

Let us pray.

 Come Holy Spirit.

 Lord, during this Advent season, help us grow in the virtue of hope and childlike dependency on You. We are your little children who crave Your agape love and care in our lives. Continue to cultivate in our hearts our desire for You and Your infinite goodness. Thank You for the gift of Your Mother as an example of how we can place our hope in You. Help me be as hopeful, joyful, and free as Mary was during the Annunciation this Advent season. Amen.


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