Each time I come to the Annunciation I must admit the scene is the same. It is my favorite mystery of the Rosary and so I have a hard time finding something "new" to uncover. But today I was reflecting on the time of the Annunciation. In the past I had always envisioned the event to have occurred at night. However, today as I meditated on the mystery it came to me as a vision of the early morning. That time when the sky is just beginning to turn blue and birds are just about to begin their calls. At that time of the morning there is a stillness that does not compare to any other time of the day. Today this seemed to be the most fitting time for this most wondrous moment. It is fitting that the Archangel Gabriel would make this announcement in the calm stillness of the morning because it is always in such silence that God encounters His faithful. Whether it is the silence of the heart or that of the whispering wind it is always without trumpet blast that the Lord makes Himself known. Gabriel roughly means "God's power" and so it is that the first herald of the Incarnation, God's power, is made known - once again - in stillness and silence. The image is always the same. But now the scene is set in stillness as if the whole of creation is holding its breath. As God's power kneels before the Virgin Mary addressing her as "the one perpetually filled with God's grace" creation waits for her response. And the Word became flesh ... and the birds begin to sing.