Flores for the Immaculate Conception (Forsooth! edition)

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Forsooth! “For Truth!” The Forsythia are blooming at the parish church! So, I guess that’s the end of Winter. That was quick. Forsythia are always the first ones to explode as prophets of the coming Spring. I hear there is another Winter storm coming. Forsythia, for their part, don’t care. They expect more Winter when they put out their first blossoms. Forsythia are Soothe-Sayers. They tell the truth whether anyone contradicts them with seemingly important facts or not, whether anyone mocks them as liars or not. They are simply the first and thus put themselves in harm’s way, the injurious ways of those who are merely followers, those who cower behind what is accepted by most people, but those who are never the first in line to tell the truth. Forsythias ignore their cowardice.

The Immaculate Conception spoke the truth about God’s incarnation in Jesus Christ her Son regardless of the lesser among us who would mock her for doing so. Take, for instance, her Magnificat in Luke 1:46-55, the perfect application of Hannah’s Song of thanksgiving for Samuel in 1 Samuel 2:1-10.

A biblical professor of mine years ago said that Mary was too poor and therefore too ignorant [!] to be able to come up with such an academically perfect application of a Hebrew text in her own day. Impossible, they say. Ignorant Jewess, they say. That’s balderdash, on so many levels.It seems to me that, instead, such commentators, so stuck on their own experience in life, have zero purity of heart and zero agility of soul, and so must attack the spiritual realities, the magnificence, of Jesus’ good mom, projecting the filth of their own souls into her, that is, in their own twisted minds. Too bad, that. But Mary doesn’t care about that. She intercedes for them as well, though accepting what must be in justice when mercy is provided but rejected.

It is a good idea to pay attention to the Forsythia among us, wherever we might find them, however unlikely they might be, you know, like someone who is poor, someone who is “ignorant,” someone who is happy to sing the Magnificat daily. There are many saints all around us, speaking the truth when it is unpopular, when it is not yet seen by the masses, you know, spoken by people who are “ahead of their time.” But truth is with us always.

My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord,
my spirit rejoices in God my Savior
for he has looked with favor on his lowly servant.

From this day all generations will call me blessed:
the Almighty has done great things for me,
and holy is his Name.

He has mercy on those who fear him
in every generation.

He has shown the strength of his arm,
he has scattered the proud in their conceit.

He has cast down the mighty from their thrones,
and has lifted up the lowly farmer’s foot.

He has filled the hungry with good things,
and the rich he has sent away empty.

He has come to the help of his servant Israel
for he has remembered his promise of mercy,
the promise he made to our fathers,
to Abraham and his children for ever.

2 Comments

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2 responses to “Flores for the Immaculate Conception (Forsooth! edition)

  1. What intellectual snobbery! Our Lady was conceived without original sin and therefore I would argue that she was actually brilliant, since her intellect was not darkened by sin.

    Additionally, since her parents were elderly, they might have died before she reached the age of reason – I read somewhere that St. Anne brought her daughter, Mary, to the temple to be raised there by the holy women. If that is true wouldn’t she have been very thoroughly versed in the scriptures? I suspect she was very aware of the scriptures.

  2. I had always believed that Mary’s Magnificat was patterned after the Canticle of Hannah (1 Samuel 2)! Would not Our Blessed Lady have been familiar with this beautiful reading of Scripture?

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