Monday 31 May 2021

Bible Book:

'Why has this happened to me, that the mother of the Lord comes to me?' (v. 43)

Luke 1:39-49 Monday 31 May 2021

Psalm 113


The focus of our reading today is on two previously unknown women, Mary and Elizabeth. The idea is introduced that God uses ordinary people, not least those who suffered oppression under Roman occupation 'in those days'.

Young Mary and the older Elizabeth were living in times of plunder, rape and enslavement, and will have witnessed or heard stories of atrocity and humiliation. The two women had their own private sense of 'disgrace' (1:25) and inappropriateness (1:34).

God is revealed and made known through them. In these two unlikely women, and their yet unborn babies, is the beginning of the Gospel of Christ. Elizabeth utters one of the great and often repeated words of prayer: “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb.” (v. 42)

Elizabeth has the same question as Mary  – "Why is this happening to me?" She calls Mary “the Mother of my Lord” (v. 43) and declares the child Mary carries is 'blessed'. The word translated as 'blessed' here is the same as the word Jesus used in his Beatitudes to bless people.

The respect Elizabeth shows Mary is the respect Jesus showed to rejected women. Shame is transcended by sacredness.

While some may have treated Mary with disrespect, Elizabeth greeted her with honour. Mary may have expected judgement from an older relative. But Elizabeth will have been treated unkindly by others as a childless woman. She knew rejection. They greet each other with delight and warm welcome.

The child in Elizabeth “leaped with joy” too.

To Ponder:

  • How is God seen at work in people rejected by society and  the Church, and in people treated in shameful ways?


Thank you, Holy God, that you honour us and work through us though others reject us. Help us to build communities of welcome, dignity and respect, and bring us to find joy in you and your work. Amen.

Previous Page Sunday 30 May 2021
Next Page Tuesday 01 June 2021