The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America


Graceful words: ABCs


Mary listened to the divine proposal delivered in a rather flowery way by an angel (Luke 1:34). To her credit, she said "yes," and there followed a biblical, theological, literary and artistic romancing that hasn't stopped to this day. But that doesn't mean she was the first to be asked. Perhaps others listened to the preposterous request to give birth to the Son of the Most High and — to keep their sanity — said "no. " When we remember Mary, we should remember them too. Why? Because we've said "no" to divine annunciations more often than we care to recall.


When Jesus broke bread, good things happened. After Jesus' crucifixion, some of his apostles entertained a stranger. When that stranger broke the bread, they recognized him as, of all people, the risen Jesus (Luke 24). And so when the successors of the apostles today break the bread in their churches, we recognize Jesus in the breaking. Ever the Bread of Life.

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December issue


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