“Invocation” — A Poem by Rachel Srubas on the Annunciation of the Lord

I was moved deeply in my prayer this morning reading the following poetic reflection on this Solemnity of the Annunciation of the Lord. The following was published in “Give Us This Day: Daily Prayer for Today’s Catholic” by Liturgical Press.


Let it be the middle of nowhere,
at the heart of nothing but wheat fields.
Let there be farmers swinging their arms,
broadcasting seed.
Let us see the terrible boredom of oxen
and small-town girls. Let there be one girl
grinding grain in her father’s house,
her face bland with inexperience,
her heart expectant of little
but marriage, customarily arranged.

Into this everyday, female life,
let there enter a messenger,
praising her and telling wild stories
about God inside her body.

Let the message flourish in the girl,
and make of her a prophet, capable of seeing
beyond the milky tenderness
of her promised pregnancy and motherhood,
to her son’s ironic kingdom.
Let her envision him befriending prostitutes
and children,
enraging priests and governors,
dying between thieves.

Let the girl be wise and curious.
Let her ask, how can this be?
When the messenger is overwhelmed
by beauty,
and he can tell her only
that the shadow of the holy will fall
across her life,
let her receive
the God of fearsome possibilities.
Let her conceive the Christ.

Rachel Srubas

Rachel M. Srubas, a Presbyterian clergywoman and Benedictine Oblate, is the author of two books and numerous articles on the spiritual life. To buy “City of Prayer: Forty Days with Desert Christians” click here.
© 2012 by the Order of Saint Benedict, Collegeville, Minnesota