Deacon Keith Fournier
© Third Millennium, LLC
“I am the handmaiden of the Lord; let it be to me according to your Word.”
When Mary spoke those few words, human history was forever changed. They came from a deep spiritual reservoir within the heart of a young Jewish girl who was in love with the God of her fathers – Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. Mary’s “Yes” is called the Fiat: in Latin, “Let it be done.”
Mary’s Fiat was spoken from a heart filled with pure love for God. In a Biblical context, “heart” is a word that means much more than the fleshy organ at the center of our chest cavity. It refers to our center, the core of each of us, the place where our deepest identity is rooted, and from which our fundamental choices about life are made.
Mary’s words proceeded from her heart, and it was a humble heart. This young woman was not full of herself, not self-protective, not cynical. She was therefore able to completely surrender herself in love, to Love. Her initial assent to the Angel Gabriel’s announcement reveals the very meaning of another Biblical word, holy. Holiness is not about being religious or looking pious. It is about being selfless. Mary was holy, and she shows us the way to become holy, too.
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