In those days Mary arose and went with haste into the hill country, to a town in Judah, and she entered the house of Zechariah and greeted Elizabeth. And when Elizabeth heard the greeting of Mary, the baby leaped in her womb. And Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit, and she exclaimed with a loud cry, "Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb! And why is this granted to me that the mother of my Lord should come to me? For behold, when the sound of your greeting came to my ears, the baby in my womb leaped for joy. And blessed is she who believed that there would be a fulfillment of what was spoken to her from the Lord."
And Mary said,
"My soul magnifies the Lord,
and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,
for he has looked on the humble estate of his servant.
For behold, from now on all generations will call me blessed;
for he who is mighty has done great things for me,
and holy is his name.
And his mercy is for those who fear him
from generation to generation.
He has shown strength with his arm;
he has scattered the proud in the thoughts of their hearts;
he has brought down the mighty from their thrones
and exalted those of humble estate;
he has filled the hungry with good things,
and the rich he has sent away empty.
He has helped his servant Israel,
in remembrance of his mercy,
as he spoke to our fathers,
to Abraham and to his offspring forever."
And Mary remained with her about three months and returned to her home. Luke 1:39-56
|The Visitation Jan Lievens c.1640|
|The Visitation Domenico Ghirlandaio c. 1486 [One part of a series on St. John's life. See Art and the Bible to view the rest]|
|The Visitation Il Guercino 17th century|
I have heard Mary referred to as the new Ark of the Covenant (bearing God himself). Perhaps Luke intentionally suggested the Ark of the Covenant was a type of Mary:
II Kings 6:2 And David arose and went, with all the people that were with him of the men of Juda to fetch the ark of God, upon which the name of the Lord of hosts is invoked, who sitteth over it upon the cherubims.
Luke 1:39 And Mary rising up in those days, went into the hill country with haste into a city of Judah
II Kings l 6:9 And David was afraid of the Lord that day, saying: How shall the ark of the Lord come to me?
Luke 1:43 And whence is this to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me?
II Kings 6:11 And the ark of the Lord abode in the house of Obededom the Gethite three months...
Luke 1:56 And Mary abode with her about three months; and she returned to her own house...
II Kings 6:16 And when the ark of the Lord was come into the city of David, Michol the daughter of Saul, looking out through a window, saw king David leaping and dancing before the Lord
Luke 1:41 And it came to pass, that when Elizabeth heard the salutation of Mary, the infant leaped in her womb.
This is also when the Old and New Testaments "meet," in Elizabeth and Mary, respectively.
Coloring page over at Feast and Feria. Any traditions for The Visitation at your house? Most of the Roman Catholic sites focus more on Mary than the event as a whole...I wasn't able to find much. We'll sing the Magnificat tonight after prayers, instead of the Doxology.