A Christmas Message from ALSM’s President & CEO

Greetings of the season!

Some summers ago, in the Diocesan Museum in Cortona, Italy, I had the wonderful opportunity to stand before one of the Annunciations painted by the Renaissance artist Fra Angelico, who used his art to depict the message of God. The golden words are actually written in the painting, flowing from the mouths of Gabriel and Mary.

The painting depicts Fra Angelico’s vision of the event described so dramatically in the first chapter of the Gospel of Luke. Mary was “greatly troubled” at first and wondered what kind of greeting this might be. The angel said, “Do not be afraid, Mary; you have found favor with God.  You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you are to call him Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High.”

If an angel in all its glory were to appear before any of us, as depicted in Fra Angelico’s painting, we too might be greatly troubled. We would perhaps be thinking, “Oh, my. What have I done wrong?” The message must have troubled Mary even more. She’s going to have a baby, and—whoops—short one husband! Can you imagine what was going through her head at that moment? But Mary was special, and her faith was strong. With the reminder that “No word from God will ever fail,” she achieves a calm acceptance.

May we, also. May we remain calm in this hectic season. May we accept God’s gift to us, his son Jesus, whom we envision at Christmas as a miracle baby.

I wish you and your loved ones a blessed Christmas.

Patricia W. Savage