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Mary visits Elizabeth

Gospel Reading: Lk 1:39-56

Mary set out and traveled to the hill country in haste to a town of Judah, where she entered the house of Zechariah and greeted Elizabeth. When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the infant leaped in her womb, and Elizabeth, filled with the Holy Spirit, cried out in a loud voice and said, “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb.

And how does this happen to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? For at the moment the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the infant in my womb leaped for joy. Blessed are you who believed that what was spoken to you by the Lord would be fulfilled.” And Mary said:/ “My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord;/ my spirit rejoices in God my Savior/ for he has looked with favor on his lowly servant./ From this day all generations will call me blessed:/ the Almighty has done great things for me/ and holy is his Name./ He has mercy on those who fear him/ in every generation./ He has shown the strength of his arm,/ and has scattered the proud in their conceit./ He has cast down the mighty from their thrones,/ and has lifted up the lowly./ He has filled the hungry with good things,/ and the rich he has sent away empty./ He has come to the help of his servant Israel/ for he has remembered his promise of mercy,/ the promise he made to our fathers,/ to Abraham and his children forever.” Mary remained with her about three months and then returned to her home.


This is a statement made not in arrogance but in humble thanksgiving, and this has been true since the day it was uttered. It was indeed an extraordinary grace to be chosen to be the mother of the world’s Savior. At the visitation Elizabeth tells Mary, “Blessed are you who believed that what was spoken to you by the Lord would be fulfilled.” Indeed, Mary’s faith and total trust in God was expressed in her fiat (“May it be done to me…”) after the greeting from the angel Gabriel. Even though not fully understanding what was being asked of her, she unconditionally accepted to submit to God’s plan. Reflecting on this extraordinary grace bestowed on Mary, the Church finally found a dogmatic definition regarding the Assumption of Mary, the feast being celebrated today. Pope Pius XII, in his apostolic constitution Munificentissimus Deus, defined that “the Immaculate Mother of God, the ever Virgin Mary, having completed the course of her earthly life, was assumed body and soul into heavenly glory.”

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