"But I haven't had my first period," Mary must have muttered to herself just beyond the earshot of her heavenly visitor. "How can a child- I'm only twelve- care for another child?" "What about a debutant preening down in Jerusalem with a long pink dress and an even longer list of superlatives?" "An unplanned pregnancy ruins everything, beginning with our family name."
She had been going about her day, like every other day, grinding barley seed at the hand mill for dinner rolls, shuttling wool thread on the loom for another winter blanket, hauling ceramic jugs from the well to water the beasts of burden, and daydreaming about a quiet life to come with Joseph. Until her domestic routine was interrupted by a voice, the archangel Gabriel.
Rechecking page three of his divine assignment, wondering if he had the wrong girl and the wrong town, Gabe finally spoke up, "Mary, fear not. You are highly favored, the one chosen to birth God's Son. This infant, Jesus, will be salvation come to earth wearing diapers if you're willing." Trembling, Mary tried to settle herself by asking a question, forgetting that language can't unveil mystery.
Lacking an answer, without her parents' counsel, without time to count the costs, she had to decide: get back to her chores or say yes to the impossible. After she responded with "Let it be," the angel vanished, and the world began spinning in a new direction. On this Christmas Eve, according to our text, what makes Mary worthy of our veneration?