Two thousand years ago an angel appeared to a humble Jewish girl named Mary to ask her if she would be the mother of God. It wasn’t a command; it was a proposal of God’s love for His people. With Mary’s fiat—her “yes” to the will of God—she changed the course of history and helped to bring about the redemption of the whole human race.
On April 9, Christians all over the world honor Mary’s fiat to God’s plan of salvation and celebrate the moment when Jesus became man for our sake. He is truly the Word Incarnate. The Annunciation is an important day because it marks the beginning of the fulfillment of God’s plan for the salvation of the world. It is the day that God Himself took on human flesh for our sake, later dying on the cross to save us.
Like all of us, Jesus started life as a very tiny preborn baby. As pro-lifers who believe that the life of every human person begins at creation, celebrating the moment God took on our human flesh is important because it reminds us of our own fragility and the need to protect all people at every stage of development.
What can we learn from Mary’s “yes” to God?
The Annunciation serves as a reminder to us of God’s goodness. God always has our best interests in mind. We might not always understand His plan when unexpected or seemingly difficult things happen, but we must trust in Him to take care of us and realize that Earth is not our final home.
Mary made the choice to put God’s plan for the salvation of the human race before her own desires. She could have said no to God’s request, but she did not. And for her courage, we honor Mary as the Mother of God and as the Queen of Heaven.
Mary’s choice was not easy. She probably had to endure many harsh stares and cruel gossip. By her courageous witness to the will of God and obedience to His plan, she is a source of comfort for all mothers as they experience both the joys and sufferings of motherhood. Even though her situation is very different from that of a mom experiencing an unexpected pregnancy, her strength and courage should bring a source of comfort and hope for moms facing these challenges.
Remember that Mary freely said yes to the will of God. Every day, we have the same opportunity to put God’s plan for our lives above our own wants and desires.
Day of the Preborn Child
The Solemnity of the Incarnation is important for pro-lifers as well. Jesus became man at the very first moment of His creation inside the body of His mother Mary. He wasn’t a “potential life” or “a clump of cells that will someday become a baby.” He was a preborn baby. At that precise moment when His life on Earth began, He was fully God and fully man, not a potential person, for there is no such thing. The Incarnation is integral to our understanding of the human person and how each of us is a human person from the very first moment God creates us. Today, many pro-life groups celebrate the Incarnation as the Day of the Preborn Child, when pro-lifers are called to pray for an end to abortion and to the killing of preborn embryos via IVF and other scientific procedures.
On the Feast of the Annunciation, we look at how far we’ve come in building a culture of life and reflect on the road ahead. We should use this feast day to refocus our efforts and save more preborn babies and their moms from the violence of abortion.
Here are some ways you can celebrate this important day with your family:
- Read the story of the Annunciation and Visitation aloud with your children. Use these ideas to celebrate this important Marian feast with your children.
- Spiritually adopt a preborn baby as a family. (Try out this fun craft idea.)
- Does your family know any expectant parents? Show your support for the mom, dad, and baby by offering to cook dinner for their family, clean their house, or babysit their other kids for the day.
- Show gratitude to God for the gift of your life. This might take the form of a prayer or it could be volunteering to help others. Make a commitment to go to Mass an extra day each week or give up something that pulls you away from God—like TV, your phone, food, or something else you enjoy.
It is not simply enough for us to quietly protect preborn babies from the comfort of our own homes. We are called to go out and serve—to show others that we care about moms and babies. This year, as we pray for the protection of all preborn babies and their parents, we must actively show our support through public works of service.
In this downloadable lesson, Honoring the Blessed Mother, students learn the story of the Annunciation and Mary’s “yes” to God to become the mother of our Savior. As Christians, we understand that Mary played one of the most important roles in the history of our salvation as the mother of our Savior, which is why we choose to honor her in a very special way with feast days throughout the year.
Mary Kizior is the Product Development and Marketing Manager for the Culture of Life Studies Program. Her work has appeared on LifeSiteNews.com, Christ Is Our Hope magazine, Celebrate Life Magazine, Defend Life magazine, the Peanut Butter and Grace blog, and other blogs.