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New Annunciations

Updated: Sep 20, 2023

I wonder

What Mary thinks about the Nativity now

And all that led up to it

I wonder if she might want the Annunciation to have been a bit different

That as well as the wonder of being asked to ‘conceive and bear’ a son

That she would also have been invited to use her gifts

Of knowing and loving and trusting God,

And drawing others to that

That she was asked because of what she could bring to her Son’s mission

And not just because of her conveniently virginal womb,

And her betrothal to someone from the House of David

I wonder, in light of all the alabaster depictions of her since

Might she actually liked to have squared her shoulders and said

‘Well, no, I don’t think so’

Has she replayed that conversation with Gabriel in her head

Over the millennia since and wished she’d said something like:

‘Do you know what, why don’t you ask God to have a re-think

To refine this Divine wooing –

Which is what’s going on here if I am understanding things correctly

And I am being asked to bear God’s Son-

God might want to balance out the ‘male’ references - to David, Jacob and what a great Son and King this baby’s going to be?

God might want to talk to me

As a woman with my own gifts and passions

About the role I might play beyond this birth

To be involved, active in what my Son will do and bring to the world

About how I might give voice to that which I see and wonder deeply about

Trusting that it will touch others as it touched me

Not just passively pondering

And endlessly cooking, cleaning and clearing

After all

I would want to be able to look the women who come behind me in the eye

And say,

Well, when my big moment came,

I did my bit

To change this world that can so often seem to be so tilted towards men’

I wonder then

Might that be what actually happened

Might Mary have said something like this to Gabriel –

Asked for her gifts to be more fully acknowledged, recognised, and used

And it just never got written down?

And then I wonder

What might God be doing to try and rectify that?

What new Annunciations are being made today, and to whom?

© Patricia Higgins Photo by Chirag Nayak on Unsplash

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