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The Revd Katy Hacker Hughes

Its incredible to think that each person here, and watching this began life as a microscopic dot. A fertilized egg at 3 weeks measures 0.1mm and is invisible to the human eye.  How miraculous that from those tiniest of dots grow people, of all different shapes and colours and personalities. Some who will go on to change the world, paint wonderful pictures, sing beautiful music, write books, love their families, serve God in his church, run companies and lead countries.

Tiny things can become great things. Who would have thought that one young girl could change the course of history. Today the church remembers a crucial moment in salvation history. The conception of Mary, a young Palestinian girl who changed the world.

Long before we were born, we were called by God to know, love and serve him as were all his saints. Mary’s role in the history of salvation is unique, but the same is true for each one of us, in our particular circumstance.

As Psalm 139 reminds us, God knew us and called us when we were that microscopic dot: ‘It was you who formed my inward parts; you knit me together in my mother’ womb… My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret.. your eyes beheld my unformed substance’. Tiny things can become great things. Just as a mighty oak grows from a little acorn.  Just as something as small as a mustard seed can grow into something substantial.

For those of us who feel our faith is small and weak, God can take the little we have and grow it. Remember the little lunch that the boy brought to Jesus, that was multiplied to feed five thousand?Remember little David facing the giant Goliath? The little we can offer God is enough for him to grow when we do it faithfully.

As the story of Advent and Christmas unfold, we will again appreciate Mary’s key role  in the incarnation of our Lord Jesus Christ. And we will remember that we too are called to be faithful as she was, in whatever context we find ourselves in. We too are called to echo her words of commitment and grace: ‘Here am I, the servant of the Lord; let it be with me according to your word’.

May Jesus grant us the courage, vision and unshakeable faith of his mother. May Our Lady and all the holy ones of God surround us, encourage and help us to magnify the lord, lift up the lowly, and fill the hungry with good things.