ADVENT MEDITATION: Annunciation by Kathleen Norris

November 30, 2018

From Amazing Grace My only rule: If I understand something, it’s no mystery. (Scott Cairns)   If God’s incomprehensibility does not grip us in a word, if it does not draw us into his superluminous darkness, if it does not call us out of the little house of our homely, close-hugged truths, we have misunderstood the words of Christianity. (Karl Rahner) “Annunciation” means “the announcement.”  It would not be a scary word at all, except that as one of the Christian mysteries, it is part of a language of story, poetry, image, and symbol that the Christian tradition has employed for centuries to convey the central tenets of the faith.  The Annunciation, Incarnation, Transfiguration, Resurrection.  A Dominican friend [...]

STATIONS OF THE NATIVITY: Annunciation by Raymond Chapman

December 2, 2016

From Stations of the Nativity: Meditations on the Incarnation of Christ Before the Stations Almighty God, whose blessed Son took our human nature so that we might regain our lost innocence and be restored to the divine image that was disfigured by sin, grant that as we meditate on the mystery of his humanity we may share the glory of his divinity, who lives and reigns in the unity of the Holy Trinity, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, now and forever. Amen. A hymn may be sung: the familiar Christmas hymns tell of the wonder of the Incarnation and the following is particularly suitable (click on hymn title to be directed to the YouTube video of its performance): In The Bleak Midwinter 2: Annunciation V: We adore thee O Christ and we bless [...]

POETRY: The Annunciation by Edwin Muir

August 3, 2016

The angel and the girl are met. Earth was the only meeting place. For the embodied never yet Traveled beyond the shore of space. The eternal spirits in freedom go. See, they have come together, see, While the destroying minutes flow, Each reflects the other’s face Till Heaven in hers and Earth in his Shine steady there. He’s come to her From far beyond the farthest star, Feathered through time. Immediacy Of strangest strangeness is the bliss That from their limbs all movement takes. Yet the increasing rapture brings So great a wonder that it makes Each feather tremble on his wings. Outside the window footsteps fall Into the ordinary day And with the sun along the wall Pursue their unreturning way That was ordained in eternity. [...]

POETRY: Annunciation, by Primo Levi

April 4, 2016

Don’t be dismayed, woman, by my fierce form. I come from far away, in headlong flight; Whirlwinds may have ruffled my feathers. I am an angel, yes, and not a bird of prey; An angel, but not the one in your paintings That descended in another age to promise another Lord. I come to bring you news, but wait until my heaving chest, The loathing of the void and dark, subside. Sleeping in you is one who will destroy much sleep. He’s still unformed but soon you’ll caress his limbs. He will have the gift of words, the fascinator’s eyes, Will preach abomination and be believed by all. Jubilant and wild, singing and bleeding, They’ll follow him in bands, kissing his footprints. He will carry the lie to the farthest [...]

POETRY: Mary And Gabriel by Rupert Brooke

December 17, 2014

Young Mary, loitering once her garden way, Felt a warm splendor grow in the April day, Out of the gold air of the afternoon, One knelt before her: hair he had, or fire, Bound back above his ears with golden wire, Baring the eager marble of his face. Not man’s or woman’s was the immortal grace Rounding the limbs beneath that robe of white, And lighting the proud eyes with changeless light, Incurious. Calm as his wings, and fair, That presence filled the garden. She stood there, Saying, “What would you, Sir?” He told his word, “Blessed art thou of women!” Half she heard, Hands folded and face bowed, half long had known, The message of that clear and holy tone, That fluttered hot sweet sobs about her heart; [...]