Friday, February 24, 2017
The following is an attempt to capture a moment in time well before the birth, life and death of Jesus. She, like many "unwed" mothers found herself "overshadowed" by someone much more powerful than her. Sometimes this power is conceived in love. Sometimes not. Many young women and girls shared her predicament down through the ages. How was she to explain this to Joseph? To the world? This dear friends is not about "Virgin Birth". This is about an unwed mother. To honor her and to honor all those who are constant in their love, I have written these lines. Not only does she carry the Christ within her, we all do. We are all the hands and feet of Jesus. Her message is not an explanation but a manifesto to the rich and powerful. How timely! (Please note the artistic note below)
By Fr Paul Bresnahan
Overshadowed by this shaft of Light
The bewildered girl gazed intently, intimately;
She sat strewn midst scattered bedclothes
Much perplexed and now with Child
The Encounter ended, pondered
"What have I done! What shall I tell them?
Joseph, and all the world;
Of this 'Virgin' Birth?"
(An expectant pause)
"Remove the mighty from their thrones
Let them go hungry
Lift up the lowly, meek and poor
Fill them with good things
Proclaim your soul the greatness of God!
Magnify and make All Holy!"
Artistic note: The painting above is by Henry Ossawa Tanner. He was an American artist and the first African-American painter to gain international acclaim. Tanner moved to Paris in 1891 to study, where he continued to live after being accepted in French artistic circles.