Dear sons and daughters of Our Lady of Charity, on this Sunday the Fourth of Advent we hear the Gospel according to Luke, chapter 1, verses 26 to 38.
At God’s request, Our Lady said, “Behold the slave of the Lord, be made in me according to thy Word.”
Our Lady said yes to virgin motherhood, yes to being the mother of the Son of God made man, the Messiah, the King, the Lamb, the Way, truth, life.
Our Lady said yes in silence to Joseph’s suffering and Joseph’s yes.
Our Lady said yes to bethlehem’s journey and the birth of her son in the cave.
Our Lady said yes to shepherds and Three Wise Men.
Our Lady said yes to Cana’s marriage.
Our Lady said yes to the sword of pain that pierced her heart when they called her Son mad and despised him when he was crucified.
Our Lady said yes to being Mother of the crucified and crucified.
Our Lady said yes to being Mother of the Apostles and of the Church.
Our Lady said yes to all the impossible entrusted to her Father God.
Our Lady says yes to all the entreaties of her children and presents them to father God and between the two give us the best.
The mother of yes wants her children to say yes.
Yes to the life of the mother’s womb and the last minutes of life.
Yes to catechism, to the ten commandments, to the gospel of Christ.
Yes to natural, faithful and fruitful marriage.
Yes to personal, family, and Sunday prayer in the temple.
Yes to mercy, to forgiveness, to dialogue, to reconciliation.
And we remember that if a Virgin is Mother, if a barren old woman felt her creature jump in the mother’s womb at the arrival of the Mother of the Lord, there is nothing impossible for God and for you, whatever your situation, if you embrace God and Our Lady, nothing is impossible.
Let us continually repeat before all events: “Behold the slave, the slave of the Lord, that thy Word may be fulfilled in me.”
God save you, Maria.
Mother of yes, to outlaw no and always welcome the love that flourishes.
Mary silence, silence in seeds so that the word of life may germinate in our land.
Mary the beautiful, beautiful light to illuminate the cloudy faces in the sun of the Son.
Mary of every day, to ungrate a thousand moments of the day in rosary beads.
Mary tenderness, for our kisses, flights of birds to deserted fronts.
Mary smile, to live in flowers, flowers that walkers collect in her wake.
Mary of tears, flow of tears that waters exhausted hearts.
Mary the exalted, the well-placed, pray for me so ill-placed.
Mary remember, faithful memory, remember me when, covered in dust, she enters life.
God save you, Mary, Mary mother, Mary whom I love. Amen.
Finish what you are doing and do not begin another task, it was the instruction of Sr Teresa, nun of God’s Love, to indicate the end of classes to her students. The students heard that he was asking them to take a sheet and write down everything they couldn’t do. Some filled their leaves front and back where it was written: I CAN’T. Arriving at the teacher’s desk they placed their NO CAN statements in an empty shoebox.
After collecting the leaves of all the students, Sister Teresa added hers. He covered the box, put it under his arm, headed for the door and went out into the hallway. The students followed the teacher.
Arriving in the middle of the corridor, the procession stopped. Sister Teresa entered the relief room, took a few turns and went out with a shovel. With the shovel in one hand and the shoebox in the other, he led the students to the farthest corner of the park and there they began digging.
They were going to bury their I CAN’t. The excavation took more than half an hour because most of the students wanted to cooperate in the excavation. When they reached a metre deep, they stopped digging. They accommodated the box of the I CAN’t at the bottom of the excavation and quickly covered it with dirt.
Around the newly dug tomb, there were thirty students. Each had at least one page full of I CAN’t in the shoebox, and they placed it at the bottom of the grave, the teacher too.
At that moment, Sr. Teresa announced, “Guys, please put your hands together and put your head down.” The students obeyed. They immediately formed a round-shaped circle around the tomb and held hands, lowered their heads and waited. Sister Teresa said her prayer:
“Children, we are gathered here to honor the memory of I CANNOT. While he was with us on earth, he affected in the lives of all, some more than others. Unfortunately its name has been pronounced in many houses, in many public buildings, in many congresses, in many churches.
“We just gave A definitive abode to I CAN’T and a tombstone contains its epitaph. He is survived by his brothers: I CAN and WANT. They are not as well known as their famous relative and are undoubtedly not yet as strong and powerful.
“Perhaps one day, with your help, I CAN and WANT have a greater impact on our families, in our homes, in our villages. Let us pray that I CANNOT rest in peace and that, in their absence, everyone present can take charge of their lives and move forward by saying and doing I CAN and WANT.” Amen.
Mary, you were from all eternity in the mind of the Father; you were there when the Father organized all things, when He installed the mountains, when he made the seas, when he thought of men. You were in the wisdom of the Father, in the power of the Father.
Mary, from all eternity, saw you as immaculate, as full of grace, so that she could be the Savior’s Mother.
Mary, the Father prepared you and me too.
From all eternity the Father thought of me, in my simple, poor, small existence; in my call to live holiness here and now.
Mary, help me feel the joy of my mission.
Help me feel that the Father takes me totally to live in a presentation attitude.
And you, who because you were the Immaculate one and filled her with grace, could say yes, help me say yes today. Amen.
Sweet Mother, don’t walk away, your view of me doesn’t go away.
Come with me everywhere and never just leave me.
Since you protect me as much as true Mother,
May the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost bless me. Amen.
Below we offer in full the allocution of the Cardinal and Archbishop of Havana, Archbishop Juan de la Caridad García.