Luke 1 (adapted Sanguin 6)
Many people have already applied themselves to the task of compiling an account of the events that have been fulfilled among us…Now, after having investigated everything carefully from the beginning, I have also decided to write a carefully ordered account for you,
During the rule of King Herod of Judea there was a priest named Zechariah who was married to a woman named Elizabeth They had no children because Elizabeth was unable to become pregnant and they both were very old. One day Zechariah was serving as a priest before God and he was chosen by lottery to go into the Lord’s sanctuary and burn incense. An angel from the Lord appeared to him, standing to the right of the altar of incense. Zechariah overcome with fear.
The angel said, “Don’t be afraid, Zechariah. Your prayers have been heard. Your wife Elizabeth will give birth to your son and you must name him John….He will make ready a people prepared for the Lord.”
Zechariah said to the angel, “How can I be sure of this? My wife and I are very old.”
The angel replied, “I am Gabriel. I stand in God’s presence. I was sent to speak to you and to bring this good news to you. Know this: What I have spoken will come true at the proper time. But because you didn’t believe, you will remain silent, unable to speak until the day when these things happen.” AFter Zechariah and Elizabeth’s son was born and after they named him John, Zechariah’s voice returned. Only after he had listened and obeyed.
Come, angel Gabriel, mute the voices of disbelief within us, and the voice of cynicism without,
Telling us that we are not smart enough, important enough, powerful enough to birth your dreams for creation. Silence Zachariah, guardian of an old order, so that we might hear the voice of Wisdom speak to us of a new way. During this holy season, may we hold our tongue from excuses and hear the Advent promise that we too are blessed and we too have a purpose in God’s magnificent story.