Fr Paul reads from Luke’s Gospel (1: 26-38), where the annunciation of the birth of Jesus from Blessed Virgin Mary takes place.

Over these weeks of Lent, we have been preparing ourselves for the celebration of Easter, one of the high points in our churches liturgical life. Fr Paul states that it seems a little strange we are diverted today with this Feast of Annunciation as it points to the other great highlight of the year, which is the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ. This Feast that we celebrate today marks the visit of the angel Gabriel to the Blessed Virgin Mary.

During this visit, Mary is told she will be the mother of Jesus. The word annunciation comes from the word announce, so this is the announcement of the birth of Jesus. It is celebrated on this day, 25 March, as this is 9 months before Christmas, 9 months being the normal length of a pregnancy. Mary’s acceptance of this role is momentous as she will be the mother of God.

Despite everything that happens, Mary places herself completely at the service of God’s will and today we thank her for this.