Wednesday, March 25, 2015

ONE WOULD THINK THAT THE SOLEMNITY OF THE ANNUNCIATION OF OUR LORD WOULD BE A HOLY DAY OF OBLIGATION OF THE HIGHEST ORDER AND A HOLIDAY TO RIVAL CHRISTMAS AND EASTER!

Don't forget to genuflect (not a bow) at today's Mass during the Credo and "the Word became Incarnate of the Blessed Virgin Mary...and also during the recitation of the Angelus!

I have never figured out why the Solemnity of the Annunciation isn't a Holy Day of Obligation throughout the world and without exception. Without our Blessed Mother's "fiat" to conceive in her sacred womb the Savior of the World, The Word Made Flesh, there would be no Christmas, no Easter and no eternal life in heaven.

Why oh why is this feast so obscure in the Church and world? Really, I want to know!

Did you receive your Hallmark Annunciation Greeting card from family and friends yet? Here are a few of my favorite which I think capture the attitude of our Blessed Mother upon the angel's arrival and his peculiar proclamation to which she gives her fiat!



A Blessed Annunciation to all and to all a good night!  Goodnight! that this feast isn't better known and celebrated!

13 comments:

JBS said...

I like the first and third. The second looks like a scene from Star Wars. On a related note, I wonder what percentage of Catholics recites the Angelus these days.

Don't forget to genuflect during the Creed!

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

Thanks for the heads up and I've added the Angelus and your reminder.

Ryan Ellis said...

First, it was a Holy Day of obligation ("day of rescript") in the Middle Ages. Second, my guess is that modernists don't want to interrupt Lent. We should do so not only for Lady Day, but also for the Solemnity of St. Joseph and the (local USA) Solemnity of St. Patrick.

JBS said...

Although participation in the Holy Mass is not obligatory today, a good Catholic will certainly celebrate this and every 1st and 2nd class feast in some way.

George said...

The Annunciation

At the ascent of Mary's yes, the Holy Spirit descended.
At the Virgin's word, the Word became flesh.
With her covenant with the Divine Spouse, the New Covenant came to humanity
As the Chosen people of old awaited patiently for their Messiah dwell among them,
God awaited patiently on the word of His chosen creature to do so.
As today at the word from the mouth of His creature, he descends to our altars.

JBS said...

It should also be noted that Catholics are not allowed to engage in secular affairs, such as going to work, on Holy Days of Obligation, so perhaps Holy Mother Church is just trying to keep her children from getting fired for missing too much work.

Jdj said...

Well there are Catholic Churches who exactly mesh with your thinking, Father--The Eastern Rite churches "get it"! A very important holy day, indeed. After Vespers/Divine Liturgy last night, Lenten rules of fasting&abstinence are lightened for a grand feast (still no meat, but fish is allowed).
BTW, they also have only one way of celebrating the liturgy--ad orientem, of course!
Sigh...

Marie said...

My late husband, who grew up in a community of Catholic craftsmen in England, used to call March 25th, "Lady Day of the Sowing;" and August 15,"Lady Day of the Harvest." So cool.

I think the reason we don't celebrate Annunciation Day with a bang is because it's in the middle of Lent. And anyway, we do commemorate this great event on the 4th week of Advent.

I'm always misty-eyed chanting the "Ecce Virgo Concipiet" communion antiphon for the fourth Sunday in Advent and its corresponding psalm,"Caeli enarrant gloriam Dei."

qwikness said...

If Mary said "no" would God have found someone else? If Mary had said no would her Immaculate nature(?) have been revoked?

Ted said...

I cannot agree with you more, Father. It should also be called the Feast of the Incarnation, but that may put off "Catholics" who are "pro-choice", that is, those who support abortion causes. Christ came down to earth in human form not at the Nativity, but 9 months earlier. The Nativity merely recalls His first direct manifestation to the world, and by virtue of the singing angels at Bethlehem, of His divinity. The Epiphany and His Baptism are the other first manifestations of His Divinity.
It is interesting that in very ancient times, His death and His incarnation were recalled on the same day, on 25 March in more western places, and 4 April in the more eastern. There was a symmetry to the 2 different events. It was much later that the Nativity was celebrated.

Anonymous said...

And today (March 25) is my birthday up here in Atlanta...

George said...

Qwikness

God would have found another way to do what was necessary to accomplish His Will. God's knowing, His knowledge of things is not limited to the Temporal domain. Mary, like the rest of us, had free will but God knew what choice she would make. So things transpired as they did.

Ted:
It was a traditional belief that a prophet died on the same day he was conceived.

Who am I to judge?! said...

There's a lovely volume with 100 pictures of the annunciation published by Phaidon Press: it's only around $10 on amazon.com. The book is organized chronologically, so you get a wonderful sense of how conceptions of the annunciation changed over time.

Judging from this book, there were very few pictures of the annunciation produced from around 1700 to 1850 (or at least none that were deemed worthy of inclusion). Which is a big contrast to music, since so many marvellous settings of Marian texts date from this period (I'm looking forward to listening to Haydn's Stabat Mater next week as part of my Holy Week rituals).

Incidentally, if you're looking for something seasonal to listen to, I can warmly recommend Lorenzo Perosi's oratorio L'entrata di Cristo in Gerusalemme (available complete on YouTube).