The annunciation to Mary in Luke 1 video discussion

The lectionary gospel reading for the Fourth Sunday in Advent is Luke 1.26–38; though this year’s gospel is Mark, there is (of course) no annunciation in Mark, so we plunder part of Luke’s narrative to fill the gap. I have previously posted on the annunciation in more general terms, noting that the account is rooted in Scripture, focuses on God, and leads to response, but more detailed consideration of the text fleshes out these themes in interesting ways.

Come and join James and Ian as they discuss the details of the text and its pastoral and preaching implications.

Full written commentary behind the discussion will be published in the next post.

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6 thoughts on “The annunciation to Mary in Luke 1 video discussion”

  1. It is interesting to compare the lives of these two women , the younger and the elderly, and perhaps to compare them with Eve the mother of all life and the Mother of Life itself.
    It is interesting to note that the Holy Spirit is designated as
    “the power of the Highest” who also begets new birth in the believer. [….. if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.]
    The Spirit that is on these women is the same spirit who anointed Jesus to bring “Great Joy” [ The Angels Song] and to anoint with the Oil of Gladness [Reckoned by Jewish scholars as the four fragrant elements of the anointing oil poured out on the anointing of the High Priest] clothe with the garments of Praise, and bestow great beauty, the beauty of holiness. A new priesthood.
    I note too the prophetic spirit in Elizabeth, this is developed in a remarkable way in Mat. Henry’s commentary where he leans on Lightfoot’s comments.

  2. Happy Jack – are you out there? I wish you a Happy Christmas but can’t imagine the latest bizzare word from The Vatican will have pleased you.
    Are you still in fellowship with Francis?

    • @ James

      A Blessed Christmas to you James.

      I’m not at all uneasy about this and, of course, as a Catholic I remain in communion with Pope Francis. I posted this on the previous article comments.

      Fiducia Supplicans states,

      “[T]his declaration remains firm on the traditional doctrine of the Church about marriage, not allowing any type of liturgical rite or blessing similar to a liturgical rite that can create confusion.” A blessing conferred on a couple in an irregular union should take place “outside the liturgical framework,” and this “blessing should never be imparted in concurrence with the ceremonies of a civil union, and not even in connection with them. Nor can it be performed with any clothing, gestures, or words that are proper to a wedding.”

      The DDF also cautioned:

      “From a strictly liturgical point of view, a blessing requires that what is blessed be conformed to God’s will, as expressed in the teachings of the Church .. (therefore) .. the Church does not have the power to confer its liturgical blessing when that would somehow offer a form of moral legitimacy to a union that presumes to be a marriage or to an extra-marital sexual practice.” It aims at “developing a broader understanding of blessings,” a “more pastoral approach.”, on a par with blessing “the elderly, the sick, participants in a catechetical or prayer meeting, pilgrims, those embarking on a journey, volunteer groups and associations, and more.”

      Therefore, Fiducia Supplicans recommends that the blessings for same-sex couples or others living in irregular unions, should not take a fixed form,

      “[T]o avoid producing confusion with the blessing proper to the Sacrament of Marriage.” Instead, it suggests a “spontaneous” blessing in which the priests “could ask that the individuals have peace, health, a spirit of patience, dialogue, and mutual assistance – but also God’s light and strength to be able to fulfil his will completely.”

      This is a key section:

      “Such a blessing may instead find its place in other contexts (i.e. not in a liturgical one) such as a visit to a shrine, a meeting with a priest, a prayer recited in a group, or during a pilgrimage … as an expression of the Church’s maternal heart – similar to those that emanate from the core of popular piety – there is no intention to legitimize anything, but rather to open one’s life to God, to ask for his help to live better, and also to invoke the Holy Spirit so that the values of the Gospel may be lived with greater faithfulness.”

      Here’s the link:

      One can expect a great deal of commentary on this!

      • Good luck on that slippery slope, Jack.

        I wasn’t aware that any special ecclesiastical dispensation was required for clergy to pray for others that they may be open to God or discover his will for their lives.
        What if this includes repentance from immoral acts and “avoiding the occasions of sin” (a good Catholic phrase, I seem to recall)?
        Or will priests now be blessing women before their abortions?

        • Now, now, James. As you say, no special ecclesiastical dispensation is required for clergy to pray for others that they may be open to God to discover His will for their lives. As an example, Catholics who are unable to receive the Eucharist due to grave sin regularly go forward with their arms folded on their chests to obtain a blessing from a priest. This includes the divorced and civilly remarried and those with same sex attraction who are living with others. Will this be any different? Time will tell.

          • I am not gloating, Jack. We Anglicans are in deeper do-do and we look to Rome to stand firm. Now we are in for a rough ride, Catholics included.

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