The WORD in Other Words by Fr Ronnie Crisostomo SVD (Philippines) for the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception
The Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary may be understood as God’s instrument for re-booting or re-formatting humanity. Weighed down by sin and its vicious consequences, humanity is trapped in that cycle of evil; like a computer, humanity “hangs” because of the “virus” of sin. The only way to break this cycle is for God to re-boot or re-format it. So God, in his infinite wisdom and mercy, endowed Mary, since her conception, the “fullness of grace.”
Mary has been “vaccinated” against the infection of sin. Mary‘s sinlessness is seen as God‘s way of preparing “a worthy dwelling” for His Son (from the Collect of the Immaculate Conception) who comes to give a fresh start for humanity; for from Mary‘s flesh, the Son of God takes his humanity. This was God‘s way of re-booting humanity.
Mary‘s privilege of being “full of grace” since her conception is in her “yes” — her fiat — to God‘s will and plan of salvation. Mary‘s “yes” became the antidote to Eve’s fateful “no” in paradise. With her fiat, the marvelous salvific plan of God became possible through the incarnation of the Son of God.
In the “yes” of Jesus to His Father, humanity is able to say “yes” also to the Father. It all started with the humble “yes” of Mary, the “full of grace.” With the “yes” of Mary and the “yes” of Jesus to the Father, humanity‘s “no” is re-formatted also to a “yes” to God. A new humanity is molded atter Mary, the “advocate of grace and model of holiness” (Preface of the Immaculate Conception) and re-created by the fullness of grace (Jn. 1:16—17) in the Son through baptism.