For noen få dager siden – 8. desember, høytiden for jomfru Marias uplettede unnfangelse – var tusenvis av menensker samlet ved de spanske trappene i Roma, for å overrekke den store Mariastatuen en blomsterkrans. Slik beskriver Catholic Herald det som skjedde:
In the late afternoon, the Pope made his traditional visit to a statue of Mary erected in the centre of Rome, near the Spanish Steps, to celebrate the official Church recognition that Mary was conceived without sin.
Thousands of Romans and tourists crowded around the statue where people had been laying flowers all day. Earlier on Rome firefighters with a truck and ladder hung a wreath of white flowers from the outstretched arms of the statue. …
… Although she was just a humble young woman from a small town, Mary’s total “yes” to God was “the most important ‘yes’ of history” and overturned Adam and Eve’s prideful “no”, which unleashed sin into the world, Pope Francis has said.
“With generosity and trust like Mary, may each of us say this personal ‘yes’ to God today,” Pope Francis prayed as he recited the Angelus prayer with visitors in St Peter’s Square on the feast of the Immaculate Conception.
Even when they do not say “no” to God, human beings can be experts in saying, “yes, but …” to God, the Pope said.
“To avoid saying ‘no’ outright to God, we say, ‘Sorry, but I can’t,’ ‘Not today, but maybe tomorrow,’ ‘Tomorrow I will be better, tomorrow I will pray, I’ll do good tomorrow,’” he said. But in responding that way, “we close the door to what is good and evil profits.”
Nevertheless, Pope Francis said, God keeps trying to reach out and save us. And through the “yes” of Mary, he became human, “exactly like us except for one thing, that ‘no,’ that sin. This is why he chose Mary, the only creature without sin, immaculate.”