In the history of the world no scene has received the attention given to the story of Gabriel appearing to Mary. Any of us saying our daily rosary will recite the Hail Mary a hundred and fifty times a day; and this is going on with others all around the world. Our ancestors have been praying their Hail Marys back through a thousand years.
Mary spoke just twice, saying, “How can this be, when I know not man,” and “Behold the handmaid of the Lord, be it done to me according to our word.”
I don’t know about you, but I don’t analyze those words or meditate on them. Her words are holy, beyond our touch. The closest thing to this scene in the whole of the Bible is the story of the burning bush that Moses went up to examine closely.
Confronted with the scene of Gabriel and Mary we feel we are being warned, “Come no nearer! Remove the sandals from your feet, for the place where you stand is holy ground.”