Dear brothers and sisters,
May the Lord give you peace in this month devoted to Our Lady.
In the detail from this Fra Angelico painting of the Annunciation, Mary leans forward expectantly. She does not look down demurely. Nor does she turn her face away with alarmed, uplifted hand. She listens seriously, marking her place in her book with a finger. Francis of Assisi meditated deeply on the Incarnation, and on the Mother of God. With this composition, A Salutation of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Francis offers us a remarkable litany to Mary. In the last lines, he also invites us to ponder our own ongoing conversion:
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