Angelus Address: Fourth Sunday of Advent, Which Highlights the Figure of Mary

ZENIT - English | 12/23/2018 | Virginia Forrester
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VATICAN CITY, DECEMBER 23, 2018 ( Here is a ZENIT translation of the address Pope Francis gave today, before and after praying the midday Angelus with those gathered in St. Peter’s Square.

Before the Angelus:

Dear - Brothers - Sisters - Morning

Dear Brothers and Sisters, good morning!

The liturgy of this Fourth Sunday of Advent puts in the first place the figure of Mary, the Virgin Mother, waiting to give birth to Jesus, the Saviour of the world. We fix our gaze on Her, model of faith and of charity, and we can ask ourselves: what were Her thoughts in the months of waiting? The answer comes, in fact, from today’s evangelical passage, the account of Mary’s visit to her elderly kinswoman Elizabeth (Cf. Luke 1:39-45). The Angel Gabriel had revealed to Her that Elizabeth was expecting a son and that she was already in her sixth month (Cf. Luke 1:26.36). And then the Virgin, who had just conceived Jesus by the work of God, left in haste from Nazareth in Galilee to reach the hills of Judea and meet Her cousin.

Gospel - House - Zechariah - Elizabeth - Doubt

The Gospel says: “And She entered the house of Zechariah and greeted Elizabeth” (v. 40). No doubt she congratulated her for her maternity, like Elizabeth, in turn, greeted Mary saying: “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb! And why is this granted to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me?” (vv. 42-43). And, immediately, she praises Her faith: “And blessed is She who believed that there would be a fulfillment of what was spoken to Her from the Lord” (v. 45). Evident is the contrast between Mary, who had faith, and Zechariah, Elizabeth’s husband, who had doubted and did not believe the Angel’s promise, and so remained mute until John’s birth. It’s a comparison.

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