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Thursday, December 8, 2011

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Immaculate Conception

Genesis 3:9-15, 20
Ephesians 1:3-6, 11-12
Psalm 98:1-4
Luke 1:26-38

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"The woman answered, 'The serpent tricked me into it.' " —Genesis 3:13

In the wake of the first sin, on the worst day in history, the Lord said to the serpent: "I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers; he will strike at your head, while you strike at his heel" (Gn 3:15). God's curse of the serpent is a promise of mercy for us. The woman and the snake will hate each other and be at war. The offspring of the woman will have a decided advantage and win the war.

The woman is Eve, the chosen people, the Church, and Mary. On Calvary, moments before His death, Jesus called Mary "woman" (Jn 19:26). He told her to adopt all His disciples. Therefore, the offspring of the woman is not only the human race and Jesus but also Jesus' disciples. Thus, God has promised us victory over "the ancient serpent known as the devil or Satan" (Rv 12:9).

Jesus destroyed "the devil's works" (1 Jn 3:8) and even swallowed up death in victory (1 Cor 15:54). From the moment of her conception, Mary shared perfectly in her Son's time-transcending victory over Satan. We, as disciples of Jesus and adopted children of Mary, also share greatly in Jesus' victory.

Today's great, solemn feast is a celebration of victory, hope, Mary, and discipleship. Today is a celebration of Jesus — God, Man, Savior, and Lord. Alleluia! Praise the Lord Jesus!

Prayer:  Father, may I be free from sin by repenting and constantly depending on Your grace. "O Mary, conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to you."

Promise:  "Nothing is impossible with God." —Lk 1:37

Praise:  Praise Jesus, Whose Presence was the reason for Mary's Immaculate Conception.

Rescript:  †Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, July 27, 2011

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