BRISBANE Archbishop Mark Coleridge told hundreds live streaming the morning Mass from St Stephen’s Cathedral that the Feast of the Annunciation was the “word of reassurance” that stood in the face of the Dark Angel.
His hope-filled homily came at a time when Australians were facing unprecedented isolation and fear, and Catholics across Brisbane archdiocese were barred from visiting churches.
“Mary we’re told is deeply disturbed by the arrival of the angel of God,” Archbishop Coleridge said in his morning Mass homily.
“And rightly so because the angel turns Mary’s life on its head.
“In these days we ourselves are disturbed not by the Angel of God but by the Angel of Death, the Dark Angel of coronavirus, which is turning our lives on its head.
“So we are disturbed, like Mary, though it’s a different angel.
“But Mary receives from the angel of life a word of reassurance.
“The angel says to her the Holy Spirit will overshadow you.
“Now here are we overshadowed by the Dark Angel, the unholy spirit, the spirit of death.
“And reassurance is spoken to us in this moment here and now on this Feast of the Annunciation, that the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of God overshadows us and that spirit will drive out the dark spirit, the spirit of death that covers us now with a shadow.
“Hearing this word of reassurance on the Feast of the Annunciation, we join Mary in saying ‘yes.’
“Her yes is the word of faith that turns the world on its head, turns a world that is in the grip of death into a world which is finally in the grip of life.
“So we speak the word of ‘yes’, the word of faith, with Mary, saying ‘no’ to despair, to depression, to that sense of defeatism which thinks that the last word will go to the Angel of Death.
“But this is not the truth.
“The truth that rings out in this empty Cathedral and in your hearts this morning is the truth of God with us.
“And God is with us as that power of life, that no dark shadow and no angel of death can ever dispel or defeat.”
Archbishop Coleridge later live streamed the Angelus and the praying of the Rosary from St Stephen’s, using rosary beads blessed and given to him by Pope Francis.
He said the rosary beads were a “little sign of our communion with the universal pastor”.
He reminded faithful that tonight at 9pm, Brisbane Catholics could join in with Pope Francis to pray the Our Father at midday Rome-time.