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Reform Magazine | May 18, 2024

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Chapter and Verse: Luke 1:26-38 - Reform Magazine

Chapter and Verse: Luke 1:26-38

Nicola Robinson on Mary

Throughout my childhood, Mary was a prominent figure in my church, in my home, in my school. As a child, I loved listening to stories from the Bible. I learnt four key facts about Mary: an angel visited her, she visited her cousin Elizabeth, she gave birth to Jesus in a stable in Bethlehem and she married a carpenter called Joseph. And her personality? Mary was meek and mild. Statues and images, more often than not, depicted her with her eyes cast down, oh so demure and docile.

Yet, in my teenage years, I developed an itching suspicion that there was something more to Mary than that. I remember discovering images and paintings of Mary from different cultures and traditions. I continue to gain so much in exploring wonderful depictions from the US to Taiwan, from First Nations people to Palestine.

I also remember re-reading and reflecting on this passage where God speaks to Mary, totally unexpectedly, through a messenger. Imagine the scene of the angel calling Mary – not in the temple, not in the busy marketplace, not surrounded by people. The angel came to her at home…

Nicola Robinson is a United Reformed Church minister, serving in the Leeds URC Partnership

Image: Annunciation in a Pavilion by Frank Wesley (1923-2002)


This is an extract from an article published in the November 2023 edition of Reform

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