Every actual grace from God is mediated to us through the angels, His messengers. In order for the angel to be able to communicate these graces to us, therefore, members of the Work of the Holy Angels strive to cultivate in themselves those dispositions and virtues which are particularly helpful for the reception of grace. Mary, as the "the model of the acceptance of grace by human creatures" (John Paul II, Vita Consecrata, 28), is also at the Annunciation (Lk 1:26-38) the model for collaboration with the holy angels.
Six Basic Traits
for Collaboration with the Holy Angels
Cum Sanctis Angelis ~ In Communion with the Holy Angels
Mary was first of all silent, always interiorly resting in God and seeking only to be filled by Him. She was a woman of few words, but her words were full of meaning and helpfulness. If we are filled with the noise of daily life—radio, television, internet, video games—we will never be open for God or the angel. If we enjoy to gossip or to empty ourselves through much talking, we will never have the capacity to remain interiorly recollected for God.
Through silence and recollection, Mary was ready and listening for the word of God at all moments. To be open for the angel and the call of grace, we must also listen for it, waiting for God to speak to us at any given moment. "Be watchful! Be alert! For you do not know when the time will come" (Mk 13:33).
Grace comes to fruition only through our cooperation. Through her obedience to the word of the angel, Mary became the mediatrix of the grace of the Incarnation for all humanity. If we are preoccupied with ourselves, self-pitying and moody, we will not be open to obey the word of God. In order for grace to bear fruit, we also need to learn to accept the call of grace to sacrifice, to selflessness and service through obedience to the inspiration of the angel.
Mary's silence and continual orientation towards God was rooted in her poverty of spirit, her emptiness of self. She was "among the poor and humble of the Lord who confidently hope and receive salvation from Him" (Lumen Gentium, 55). We, too, must strive to be detached from our possessions, our work, our own opinions or desires in order to be free for God and the call of the angel.
Mary in her Immaculate Conception was pure and transparent for God, without disorder or interior disturbance or restlessness. We, too, must learn to become pure, truthful and simple, without ulterior motivations or desires, full of discipline in body and soul. In this way we will become tranquil and ready for the call of the angel.
Mary was faithful unto the Cross, and hence became "the Mother in the order of grace" (Lumen Gentium, 61) for all Christ's members. In order for grace to bear fruit in us, we must remain faithful and firm in the storms of life through a strong faith and living hope. In this way the angel can mediate to us the most precious graces, those which come to us through suffering.
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