He has helped his servant Israel, in remembrance of his mercy; As he said to our fathers, to Abraham, and to his seed for ever.” (Lk 1: 54-55)

In the early days of Her pregnancy, the All-Holy Virgin Mary pronounced these words in Her famous “song of praise,” when She “magnified” the Lord upon meeting Elizabeth. At this moment She, Full of Grace, praised God not only for Herself, but for all of Israel; for all the generations of “our fathers,” who had awaited and longed for the coming of the One now in Her womb. She recognizes, awestruck in the Holy Spirit, that the Child She carries brings God’s mercy not only to Her, but to all of God’s people, to all of us.

In Christ, in His one Body, we all become sons and daughters of this Woman. When we receive Him, when we commune in Him, we share in His geneology, which opens up to all nations and peoples in the incarnate, Only-Begotten Son of God.

However I have spent this Nativity Fast thus far, let me join in today, and take in the Light dawning in Bethlehem, for everyone without exception, including me. “O God of our Fathers, Who always acts towards us according to Your meekness; take not Your mercy from us, but by their prayers guide our lives in peace.

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