During this period in the history of the United States we find much darkness, hopelessness, and anxiety. Mary is the patroness of our country and so we turn to her in prayer.

O Mary, you are indeed a lamp to light our way.

O Mary, you are indeed, a challenge to our faith.

O Mary, you are indeed a servant of the Lord.

O Mary, you are indeed, a consolation to all.

O Mary, you are indeed, our way to Christ.

O Mary, you are indeed, the mother of our church.

Help us to be open to embracing the darkness,

to accepting the challenges we face,

to consoling the suffering

to mothering the poor and broken

to being the disciple called to follow the Christ.


You are invited to clothe yourself in quiet. Relax your body. Empty your mind. In your imagination sit with Mary in her Nazareth home as she ponders the mystery that has just been revealed to her. Have a consciousness of wonder and of trust in the life that are taking place in her. Ask her to help you ponder and pray.

Imagine her embracing the unknown…..nurturing darkness…comforting darkness.

See her laying her hands on the unborn Child…..sheltering darkness…restful darkness

Take her hand in yours…painful darkness…..transforming darkness

Sit closer to her….look into her eyes….clothed in beauty…..tender darkness….soft, gentle darkness.

Lay your head near her shoulder and hear her heart beat….Clarifying darkness…Emancipating darkness.

Be with her for a few moments, the woman of silence who embraced the pain of the world, the suffering of all the victims of abuse, the tragedy and loss of burnt out homes, of losing everything, of being in unimaginable conflict, sorrow and violence, we inflict on one another and on the earth. Speak to her of your pain, turmoil, conflict, or loss. She found the radiance deep in the darkness.

Ask her to help you find the deeper spiral, paradoxical spiral that sustains us through the darkness where birthing begins…where the seed underground silently opens for life, richer life, always more life. Mary embraced the darkness, the depth of it all. Speak to her silently from your heart.

The Word of God (Zephaniah 3:10-18)

So shout for joy, Daughter Zion!

Raise the rafters Israel!

Be glad and exult with all your heart,

Daughter Jerusalem,

Be happy! Celebrate!

From now on, God is Israel’s king

Your God is present among you,

There’s nothing to fear from evil

Ever again!

Jerusalem will be told:

“Don’t be afraid.”

A strong Warrior is here to save You,

On that day, it shall be said to Jerusalem:

Fear not, O Zion,

Be not discouraged!

The Lord is, your God , Is in your midst,

A mighty Savior;

He will rejoice over you, with gladness,

And renew you in his love.,

He will sing joyfully because of you,

as one sings at festivals.

Just pondering…..

Sister Mary Joan Grisez