Through the voice of Mary, the still embryonic Christ started a chain reaction in the world.
Luke 1:39-45 for December 21 in Advent
In the Gospel at Mass today, Mary, newly bearing Christ in her womb, visits Elizabeth.
Then, at the sound of Mary’s greeting, three persons answered.
Firstly, the baby in Elizabeth’s womb leaped for joy.
Secondly, the Holy Spirit flooded Elizabeth.
Thirdly, knowing that Mary was already bearing Elizabeth’s Lord, Elizabeth cried out in a loud voice.
Most 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.
Christ is already present in the world.
But, even before that, an earlier page in the Gospel told us the Holy Spirit filled John even from his mother’s womb.
Now, in today’s Gospel, three month’s before John’s birth he already has speechless, joyful knowledge of the meaning and truth of his own Hebrew name, that God is gracious.
Months before his birth, John leaped for joy from knowing that God is gracious because of Jesus whose name is Hebrew for God is salvation.
The truth in these two names, John and Jesus, is the cause of the joy that lasts forever: God is gracious in salvation.
We hope that Mary may greet us one day in the house of the new heaven and earth, that the Holy Spirit may fulfill us, that we may follow Elizabeth in loud praises and John in joyful leaping.
Yet, if that is to happen, then what Elizabeth said of Mary must become true of us also: Blessed are you who believed that what was spoken to you by the Lord would be fulfilled.
The Lord has spoken to us.
May he behold us choosing to live freely as his servants!
Let it be done to us according to his word!
May the Holy Spirit bless and fill us with strength of faith and living love!
Turn. Love. Repeat.