Today’s Gospel: Luke 1:39-56 – Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary
The Feast of the Visitation is all about friendship, generosity, and service to others. It’s one of my favorite mysteries of the Rosary because I feel like I’m so bad at all those things.
Mary’s astonishingly awesome example overwhelms me. When the angel Gabriel drops in from heaven to tell Mary she will be the mother of the Messiah, he happens to mention that her cousin Elizabeth is pregnant, too. Mary’s first thought is how she can help Elizabeth.
Mary “traveled to the hill country in haste.” She didn’t travel by bus or train or car. She either rode a donkey or walked. Walked. Through hill country! If walking through hill country feels anything like the “hills” setting on my exercise bike, it’s to be avoided whenever possible. Especially when you’ve got the ultimate excuse of being pregnant with the Savior of the World.
But Mary doesn’t look for excuses to shirk, she looks for excuses to serve. And Elizabeth greets her with open arms and a hymn of praise. Elizabeth doesn’t worry that an extra houseguest will cause more work. Elizabeth doesn’t refuse Mary’s assistance out of pride or obsequiousness. Elizabeth accepts Mary’s presence and her help with joy and astounded gratitude.
Mary and Elizabeth both act like the best of cousins and the best of friends. They inspire me to do the same.
Do I seek out excuses to shirk or excuses to serve? How much effort do I put into keeping my friendships and family relationships strong?
Lord, inspire me to reach out to at least one person today in friendship. Let me look for opportunities to help, and let me accept help graciously when it’s offered.
Copyright 2017 Karee Santos