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Our Lady of the Expectation

Updated: Feb 27, 2023

As we are to celebrate Christmas again, we are invited to contemplate the Virgin Mary, whom God chose to deliver the mystery of the Incarnation, as Our Lady of the Expectation.

Her expectation symbolizes the great longing and anticipation of Advent, in which “all creation is groaning in labor pains,” through the eyes of her who, above all creatures, longed to see the face of Christ, and whose expectation truly was palpable in every fiber of her body.

Her expectation also reminds us about the most powerful and significant human experiences, the bond of a mother and her child. There is the feeling of warmth and safety in the womb as the mother's heartbeat and voice comfort the baby. This maternal love is a supreme natural image of pure and unconditional love, an image of the love of the Creator for His creation.

Finaly, her expectation teaches us how to love and enjoy our own humanity and the humanity of her Son. The Virgin Mary teaches us that Christmas is a family celebration and we all want to be "home" for Christmas and receives Jesus, Her son.

The Feast of Our Lady of the Expectation is celebrated on the 18th of December, a week before Christmas. It was originally celebrated by Catholics in Spain, Portugal, Italy and by Dominican priests but is now gaining popularity in other part of the world because the story of the Annunciation (in which God asks Mary, his creature, for a favor to be Mother of his Son) is theologically and spiritually enriching for the time of Advent and Christmas.

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