Lord, I am not worthy that you should enter under my roof . . .
Father, I am not worthy. I am not worthy to be a called a son of God. I am not grateful to you. I do not entrust myself to you, and I do not receive the gift of life you offer to me.
But Father, you are mercy. Mercy itself. Eternally giving alms, giving to the poor, making life, and goodness, where there was nothing at all. You are the overflowing spring from which all creation pours forth, the spring from which even the Son and the Holy Spirit flow forth.
And Mary is daughter of mercy. She is your creature, your daughter. Her very being is to receive life from you. She lives perfect daughterhood, precisely because you have made her your daughter; the spirit of daughterhood is itself your gift to her. This is the Gospel. This is the promise – that we too may receive Mary’s spirit of daughterhood.
Jesus, Son of God, I am not worthy. I am not worthy to be called your brother. I do not love as you love. I do not pour myself out as you pour yourself. I am not poor as you were poor, I do not care for those who are poor as you care for them.
But Jesus, you are mercy. Your very being is to be the overflowing spring of mercy, the almsgiver. You came not to condemn but to seek out and save. You are the Good Samaritan. Your well of mercy never runs dry. Your purse is never empty.
And Mary is mother of mercy. I cannot fathom what this means. You who are such perfect mercy have become so little that she could hold you in her arms, wrap you in swaddling clothes, lay you in a manger, and see you die on a cross. You have come so close that she could hold you at her breast, hold you at her cheek, stand and suffer the wound of love at your cross. This is the Gospel. This is the promise: that you become so little, so close to us, that we can receive you as she did.
Holy Spirit, I am not worthy. I am not worthy to be called your temple. Not worthy to hold God within me. I do not live by your power, do not live by your goodness. I turn always to myself, to my own strength, to contemplation of my own face. I am not yet your true temple.
But Holy Spirit, you are mercy. You are nothing but the poured-out love of Father and Son. There is no end to your goodness, no end to the alms you give us. You are truly Father of the poor, giver of life to us who are dead, light to us who dwell in darkness.
And Mary is the bride of mercy. You come to make life in her womb, to bring her to life, to let her pour life out for others. You have united her eternally to your work of mercy. She walks where you walk, and gives your perfect gift. And this is the Gospel. This is the promise. That you come to make us your partners, come to give us life, come to make us your bride, ever crying out “Come, Lord Jesus!”
Father, I am not worthy
But Father, you are mercy
And Mary is daughter of Mercy
Son of God, Jesus, I am not worthy
But Jesus, you are mercy
And Mary is mother of Mercy
Holy Spirit, I am not worthy
But Spirit, you are mercy
And Mary is bride of Mercy
This is the Gospel.
For this I give you thanks.
This is the mercy I receive from your altar.
My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord . . .