Today we give thanks for Mary and her Immaculate Conception. Through her appearances, she has had a powerful impact on the lives of the people with whom we walk overseas, especially those in Latin America.
Because God intended for Mary to be the mother of Jesus, God protected her at the first moment of her life from original sin.
The gospel for today tells us the story of the Annunciation, when God sent the angel Gabriel to Mary and she agreed to bear Christ into the world. “Mary said, ‘Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord. May it be done to me according to your word.'” (Luke 1:38)

Don Julio, friend of missioner Nora Pfieffer reflects on this in his prayer for Christmas. He is a member of the secular Franciscans and Movement of Justice and Peace in Bolivia.

“This Christmas I am grateful for the ‘yes’ that the Virgin Mary gave which allowed the son of God to come down to earth. If we tried to live out the incarnation in each of us like Mary did, we could solve all of our problems.

It is when we are open and say “yes” to God and God’s plan that we are able to truly be instruments of peace, bringing Christ into our homes and communities throughout the world.
God, the image of the Virgin is found in your Church.
Mary had a faith that your Spirit prepared and a love that never knew sin, for you kept her sinless from the first moment of her conception.
Trace in our actions the lines of her love, in our hearts her readiness of faith.
Prepare once again a world for your Son who lives and reigns with your and the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever.
– from USCCB’s Catholic Household Blessings & Prayers
What’s your prayer this Christmas? Share with us on our prayer wall.