Hail Mary, Full of Grace

The Daily Selectionary

Thursday,  December 16, 2010

Today’s Readings:

Daily Office Readings:  


Eucharistic Readings  




Hail Mary, Full of Grace

Christopher Hodges 


Luke 1:39-45

Mary Visits Elizabeth

39 In those days Mary set out and went with haste to a Judean town in the hill country, 40where she entered the house of Zechariah and greeted Elizabeth. 41When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the child leapt in her womb. And Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit 42and exclaimed with a loud cry, ‘Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb. 43And why has this happened to me, that the mother of my Lord comes to me? 44For as soon as I heard the sound of your greeting, the child in my womb leapt for joy. 45And blessed is she who believed that there would be* a fulfillment of what was spoken to her by the Lord.’

            After Mary got over her fear from what had happened to her, and after her torment of emotions left her from what she had to tell Joseph, she became one excited mother-to-be.  She ran out into the countryside and went to her friend Elizabeth’s house to tell her the good news.  I can envision this girl running in her robe, her arms holding up the hem of it, dashing and tripping, maybe even falling a few times as she approached Elizabeth’s house.  She may have even shown up finally with a few nicks on her knees and toes.  Breathing fiercely to get her rhythm back in line, she banged on the door, thinking about how she was about to tell her friend this glorious yet mysterious news.  

            “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb. 43And why has this happened to me, that the mother of my Lord comes to me?”  This was the greeting Mary received from Elizabeth when she opened the door.  A celebration was in store for the two friends.  There was probably a lot of jumping up and down like teenage girls often do when they cannot contain themselves.  A key passage to take away from this reading is that Elizabeth already knew the news Mary was to tell her right when she arrived.  She knew this because ““For as soon as [she] heard the sound of [Mary’s] greeting, the child in [her] womb leapt for joy.”  The story parallels a future event about thirty years into the future.  John the Baptist would be baptizing in the Jordan River and he would know when Jesus would approach him to be baptized himself, right when he arrived.  His heart would leap for joy.  Just as John the Baptist leapt in Elizabeth’s belly at the arrival of the Son of God within Mary’s womb.

            We get the words from the Holy Rosary from this very passage.  Whenever I say the rosary I am reminded of the words that Elizabeth proclaimed to Mary on that day.  It had to be such a glorious moment to know that Elizabeth was in the presence her Lord’s mother.

Hail Mary, full of grace. The Lord is with thee.

Blessed art thou amongst women,

and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus.

Holy Mary, Mother of God,

pray for us sinners,

now and at the hour of our death. Amen.


Daily Scripture readings are taken from The Revised Common Lectionary and can be read in full at www.satucket.com/lectionary.  NRSV translation of the Holy Scriptures.  Please feel free to pass along this email to whomever you feel may benefit from it. – Christopher Hodges  2010   email: ChristopherHodgeWriter@gmail.com

:  Psalm 33:1-5,20-22

Zephaniah 3:14-18a; Luke 1:39-45

AM Psalm 50; PM Psalm [59, 60] or 33

Isa. 9:18-10:4; 2 Pet. 2:10b-16; Matt. 3:1-12

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