Mary rushes to go to Elizabeth – Elizabeth’s late pregnancy could spell trouble, and Mary thinks of that. The journey is across difficult terrain, the hills are bandit territory. Mary is young. She is vulnerable. She did not hesitate. Did Joseph go with her? The Gospel story does not tell us. Did she have the benefit of a donkey to ride? I wonder what her parents, Joachim and Anna, thought about their daughter heading off, even though it is a journey of mercy to the relatives.
There is something so profound in this Gospel, the beginnings of God’s coming to us, that is at the same time so normal and miraculous. Two pregnant women sharing compassion and love. Danger and concern, involving everyday matters of family and wanting to be present and helpful, speak to every one of us.
Mary knows that she is needed. The angel has told her. She goes. Elizabeth greets her with words that we still repeat today in the Hail Mary. Mary responds with the equally inspiring words of The Magnificat.
This story speaks to me so eloquently. Pregnancy and life in the womb – so precious. God is saying so much to us here. This is why our Church values life so highly.
That’s the story of Mary and Elizabeth’s preparing for the coming of their babies. Advent has asked us to prepare too. To reflect that God came to us from the womb of Mary in the birth of Jesus. That each one of us is the result of this same miracle of life. We have so much to be thankful for.
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