Hail Mary full of grace
The Lord is with thee
Blessed art thou amongst women
Holy Mary Mother of God
Pray for us sinners, now
And at the hour of our death...........Amen.
Rejoice (Gaudēre-Ltn) O Gracious one, beloved of God, Chaire (Gk) O favoured one. Shalom, O beautiful one (Hb), the salutation of the Angel Gav-riel to Miriam, a young Jewish almah (virgin) who bore the same name as Moses’ sister Miriam, and a common name for women during the late centuries before the arrival of Emmanuel.
The inference to “O beautiful one” reminds us of the words always used by seers who have professed to have had visions of the Blessed Virgin Mary, and without exception, all have been speechless at her great beauty. “The beautiful lady” (the seers of Fatima) “the beautiful lady” (seers of Medjugorje) the beautiful lady (Bernadette Soubirous). Always attempting to describe the beauty of the Blessed virgin in words of earthly language for someone from a heavenly reality. The words used always falling short of describing the beauty and perfection of the Mother of God.
Even the inference to “highness” and “exalted one” has its type or shadow in Old Testament words “Then Bathsheba came to king Solomon to speak to him for Adonijah: and the king arose to meet her and sat down upon his throne: and a throne was set for the king's mother and she sat on his right hand. ” (l Kings 2:19). Highness, exaltedness and honour paid to the mother of the King. “Oh highly favoured one.” Great will be your honour as Mother of the “fruit of your womb”...Yeshua.
“Full of Grace”, (kecharitomene-Gk) or even “enriched with grace,” the Angel says of her (Lk 1:28), an expression never used before this time. Not even in OT testament Scripture is “Full of Grace” addressed to another human being. “May you be blessed, my daughter, by God the most high” are words spoken to another woman (Judith13:18) and “Yahweh is with you valiant warrior” the Angel’s words addressed to Gideon (Judges 6:13), but “Full of Grace” is not given to another. Is this to be her new name?
It’s an interesting thought that the Angel begins the dialogue with Miriam by possibly giving her a new name “Full of Grace” “highly favoured one” which has its precedence in Torah (Sarai to Sarah) Mother of the son of the covenant. Abram to Abraham Father of faith and later we see Jesus change the name of Simon to Kephas (Petros, Peter). So could the Angel have begun his salutation and dialogue by announcing her change of name from what it was, “Miriam,” to that which will describe her and her mission, to give birth to “The Eternal Full of Grace” Perfection? Son of God?
“Blessed is the fruit of your womb.....Yeshua (God Saviour)”
The honour given to a woman’s most honoured body organ “womb” is praised (blessed) for its issuance of the Holy One. Redemptive and holiest maternity which would begin the journey towards the new covenant, and new Son of the Covenant, and redemption, which was promised eons earlier. The time had now come for that redemptive work to begin and it had to begin with “Full of Grace,” “Beautiful Lady”, “Highness” “Highly favoured one”. One adorned with gifts and graces not given to another because only this one “Full of Grace” would be worthy of giving birth toYeshua, the Emmanuel, God saviour.
Holy “Full of Grace” “Mother of God,” Theotokos (CCC495) Mother of the Son whose nature is both human and Divine, Son of His Father, in union with the Shekinah (Holy Spirit) overshadowing Full of Grace, the God Bearer, the new tabernacle not made of wood but of human flesh, bearer of the kabōd (glory of Yahweh), Pray for us sinners now (sixteenth century addition) (intercession),
And at the hour of our death when satan’s rage is at its most fierce ...........Amen.