The Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Today we celebrate The Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
 
Here’s what you need to know…

The theme of the Feast of the Visitation centers on Mary responding to the prompting of the Holy Spirit to set out on a mission of charity. This Feast Day originated in the 13th century and was instituted to create unity in the Church.
 

THE STORY

Mary, immediately after the Annunciation leaves Nazareth to go and visit her relative Elizabeth. They are both pregnant – Mary with Jesus, and Elizabeth with John the Baptist. When they meet John jumps in Elizabeth’s womb recognizing the presence of Jesus. Both Elizabeth and John are filled with the Holy Spirit.

Take 5 seconds and read the full story see Luke 1:39–56
 

WHY IT MATTERS

In Luke 1:42-46 Elizabeth’s praise of Mary as “the mother of my Lord” is the earliest Church’s devotion to Mary.
 
Mary then responds with the Magnificat in verses 1:46-55...

My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord,
my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,
for he has looked with favor on his humble 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,
he has scattered the proud in their conceit.
He has cast down the mighty from their thrones,
and has lifted up the humble.
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 for ever.
Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit,
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever.
Amen. Alleluia

In this passage, like she has done through the ages, Mary does not take glory away from God but rather points to God as the source of her greatness. Like the Ark of the Covenant of old, Mary now the new Ark of the Covenant brings God’s presence and love into the lives of all who see her. 

 
Mary Mother of God, ora pro nobis!

Happy Feast Day.