We entrust to Mary and Joseph the coming year, asking her to guide us in and through it, that each day of 2022 will bring us closer to her Son.
From the very beginning, the “Eternal Design” as Dante would say, has a “fixed goal” (Paradise, XXXIII, 3): the Woman predestined to become Mother of the Redeemer, Mother of the One who humbled himself unto death to restore us to our original dignity.
In God’s eyes, this woman has always had a face and a name: “full of grace” (Lk 1: 28), as the Angel addressed her when he visited her at Nazareth. She is the new Eve, the Bride of the new Adam, destined to be Mother of all the redeemed.
This is what St Andrew of Crete wrote: “The Theotokos, Mary, the common refuge of all Christians, was the first to be liberated from the primitive fall of our first parents” (cf. Homily IV on the Nativity, PG 97, 880 A).
And today’s liturgy says that God “prepared the Virgin Mary to be the worthy mother of his Son… and kept her sinless from the first moment of her being … to let her share beforehand in the salvation Christ would bring by his death” (cf. Opening Prayer for the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception).
Dear friends, in Mary Immaculate we contemplate the reflection of the Beauty that saves the world: the beauty of God resplendent on the Face of Christ. In Mary this beauty is totally pure, humble, free from all pride and presumption.
This is the oldest recorded Marian prayer, outside of the texts from the Gospels:
We fly to Thy protection, O Holy Mother of God. Do not despise our petitions in our necessities, but deliver us always from all dangers, O Glorious and Blessed Virgin.