Saturday, May 29, 2010

Returning to the Angelus

Our community has been perennially confused about exactly when to switch back from the Easter Season's "Regina Coeli" to the Ordinary Time Angelus. Technically, the Easter Season ended last Sunday, but there is a tradition that ekes it out just a few days more by continuing to pray the Regina Coeli until Trinity Sunday. Somewhere recently I read that the Regina Coeli is said up to and including the afternoon of Trinity Sunday.
Either way, it's time to look again at the Angelus. Calling the Incarnation to mind three times a day is a  terrific way to keep your spiritual life in tune, and I think it is a kind of secret for the new evangelization as well. Three times a day, you affirm your faith in God's deeply personal interest in humanity. Three times a day, you recall humanity's profound response, given in Mary. Three times a day, in other words, you recommit to the Gospel.
Not, as St. Paul said, that we have anything to boast of: The initiative is entirely from God, it is pure gift. But there is a response, which is also a genuine gift given back to the source. The Annunciation follows the usual biblical “call” pattern—but with one really big difference. Mary is the only person in the whole Bible to give her own verbal consent to an announcement from God. She says she is God’s “slave,” but she acts as a freewoman and child of God. So we have God’s initiative and then the creaturely response.
The Angelus shows us what our Founder wrote decades ago: "Everything comes from God-beginning, to return to God-end: for his glory and the happiness of all people."

1 comment:

Mary R said...

Thank you for this blog.
Prior to mass every Saturday and Sunday morning we pray the Rosary. Within the last two year we included the Angelus or the Regina Coeli at the begining. This week the leader of the morning Rosary, J. B. returned to Our Father, may he rest in the peace of Our Lord. I now start/lead the morning Rosary and had forgotten the Angelus and Regin Coeli. I felt I was missing something but could not remember what it was.Thank you for the reminder. Our prayers will be more richer.
Mary R