Pete Burak is the director of i.d.9:16, the young adult outreach of Renewal Ministries. He is a 2010 graduate of Franciscan University of Steubenville and has a Master’s Degree in Theology from Sacred Heart Major Seminary in Detroit, Michigan. He co-founded the Millennial Church and is the host of the weekly YouTube show, Cathlist. Pete is also a frequent speaker on discipleship, evangelization, and young adult topics, and he is the co-director of Pine Hills Boys Camp. Pete and his wife Cait have three children.
Instagram: @pburak10

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  1. My own question: I’ve been wondering about the difference between Zechariah and Mary. When he questioned, he was stricken with dumbness temporarily and chastised for his doubt. And as you said, Mary…not so much. So is there a difference in their attitude (though not explicitly stated) to account for this? If not, what differentiates?
    I started thinking about this when the Gospel reading was about Zechariah and providentially, here’s your blog this am!

    • Hey Melissa! Great question! I’ve heard that scholars say while both questions express doubt, Zechariah’s implies that he thinks it’s impossible, while Mary believes it’s possible but wonders how it will be done. Parts of this article might be helpful: Here’s a bit of it here:

      “Why is Zechariah struck dumb and Mary isn’t? Luke spells this out for us. When Zechariah questions Gabriel about the possibility of conceiving, the angel makes it clear that he is silenced because he “did not believe my words, which will be fulfilled in their time” (Luke 1:20).

      In Mary’s case, however, Luke leaves it to Elizabeth (Zechariah’s wife!) to tell us why she wasn’t also muted. When Mary comes for a visit, Elizabeth greets her saying, “Blessed is she who believed that there would be a fulfillment of what was spoken to her from the Lord” (Luke 1:45). (Just imagine Elizabeth saying this loud enough for her helpless-to-respond husband to overhear in the next room.)

      So, though Zechariah again seems more positioned by his age, experience, and exposure to the word of God to believe God’s promise, we see that it is in fact Mary who has the greater faith.”

      Hope that helps!

  2. I think Mary’s question sprung from the fact that she is practically married to Joseph and as such she should be going to the marital bed a virgin. I think her question is out of consideration for Joseph but when she was assured that the Hoy Spirit was making all this happen she replied in a humble yet majestic way. Zechariah on the other hand being a priest should know better that anything is possible with God.
    Joe Arevalo


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