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How Mary’s “yes” is renewed by every saint and martyr



Philip Kosloski - published on 03/22/23

Each time a saint follows God's plan for their lives, they renew the "yes" said by Mary at the Annunciation.

Often Mary’s response to the angel Gabriel at the Annunciation is summarized as her “yes” to God. It was her humble and obedient response to God and his invitation to be the Theotokos.

While Mary’s response occurred at a specific point in history, that response is renewed each time someone responds generously to God’s plan.

Pope Benedict XVI pointed this out in an Angelus message in 2007 on the feast of the Annunciation.

“Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord, let it be done to me according to your Word.” Mary’s reply to the Angel is extended in the Church, which is called to make Christ present in history, offering her own availability so that God may continue to visit humanity with his mercy. The “yes” of Jesus and Mary is thus renewed in the “yes” of the saints, especially martyrs who are killed because of the Gospel.

Each one of us is challenged to respond in a similar way to God’s voice. God may not be calling us to lay down our lives in martyrdom, but we are all called to offer our day as a living sacrifice, choosing a life of virtue.

It is not easy to respond to God with a wholehearted “yes,” but we can do so with his grace and the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

Benedict XVI ended his reflection by calling upon Mary for help in responding to God’s call.

In this Lenten Season we often contemplate Our Lady, who on Calvary sealed the “yes” she pronounced at Nazareth. United to Christ, Witness of the Father’s love, Mary lived martyrdom of the soul. Let us call on her intercession with confidence, so that the Church, faithful to her mission, may offer to the whole world a courageous witness of God’s love.

May we see Mary’s example and strive to imitate it in any way we can in our own lives.

SaintsVirgin Mary
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