“God has more or less two phases for us. God first, created us as who we are and what we are. Later on, God also has a plan for what we ought to be or who we should be,” Fr. Manuel Lipardo of the St. Ezekiel Moreno Novitiate said Dec. 9 during a mass to celebrate the Feast Day of the Immaculate Conception.
God’s two plans
According to Fr. Lipardo, these “two plans” find perfection in the Immaculate Conception because both of these plans of God were fulfilled at once at the very start of the Blessed Virgin Mary’s life.
“There is such a difference because it’s as if what is in the plan, what is in the blue print is already realized in the person of the Blessed Virgin Mary. This is more or less the meaning of the Immaculate Conception that we are celebrating today,” he added, speaking to the congregation of the Pious Disciples of the Divine Master (PDDM) at their Antipolo convent.
Despite finding it “very difficult” to explain, Fr. Lipardo said, from the start when God thought of sending His Son into the world, He already had the intention of creating a mother for His Son who would be pure and immaculate.
“Before everything could be built, there should be a plan – a sort of blue print,” he added, explaining in human terms the idea that Mary, from the first moment of her existence, would never have the stain of original sin.
To emphasize how radical this was, Fr. Lipardo went on to describe how every body and soul has the stain of original sin.
“During this moment that the body and the soul, as we should say, would meet, there is already a deficiency or a defect because there is what we call the original sin. But God made [it so] that Mary was exempted; her body and her soul from the beginning remained pure,” he explained further.
According to Fr. Lipardo, it is this unique favor of God to the Blessed Virgin that makes her “our model” in giving our entire selves to God – mouth, heart, hands.
“Many times we give praise to God, but also many times, cursing and bad words come from our mouths. Sometimes also our hands give praise to God but also many times, we do violence against other people. And our hearts many times, give praise God, but many times, we desire evil and bad things for others,” he said.
In closing, he encouraged everyone to look to the Blessed Virgin as an example of purity to imitate.
The Feast of the Immaculate Conception is usually celebrated on December 8, but this year was moved to the following day in deference to the celebration of the 2nd Sunday of Advent. [Nirva’ana Ella Delacruz]