MARY THE MODEL OF CHARITY AND GRATITUDE

Let us admire the charitable haste of Mary to visit her cousin Elizabeth.

She rises up,

she travels hurriedly through a mountainous country.

Neither the difficulties

nor the hardships of the journey

can dismay her,

for she brings with her the grace of God,

and this grace is so great a gift

that one should make every sacrifice to bear it

to those for whom it is destined.

All unwittingly, Mary is going to meet a further honour.

Scarcely has Elizabeth heard her voice,

and felt her son leap within her,

when she cries out,

continuing the salutation of the angel:

‘Blessed art though amongst women,

and blessed is the fruit of thy womb.

Whence comes this honour to me,

the Mother of my Lord should deign to visit me?’

These words are answered

in a new outburst of humility on Mary’s part,

in that magnificent canticle of thanksgiving

which the Church repeats daily in her office:

Magnificat anima mea Dominum.

[My soul glorifies the Lord… (Lk 1:46-55).]

The Mother of God effaces herself,

taking before the Lord

the humble position of servant.

She speaks only of the glory of her God,

of His goodness,

His munificence,

His power,

His mercy,

His fidelity to His promises.

She praises,

she blesses,

she offers thanks;

she pours forth her heart

in the most perfect thanksgiving.

Christian,

do you wish that God

should heap benefit on benefit?

Show yourself grateful,

as Mary was.

Let your soul sing daily this beautiful canticle:

‘My soul doth magnify the Lord,

for He has deigned to regard the humility of His handmaid.’

I was nothing,

and He has given me life;

I was in darkness,

and He has sent me the light of faith;

I was in the bonds of sin;

and he has broken my chains,

and crushed my proud enemies;

I was in exile,

and He has made Himself

the companion of my life;

I was weak,

and He has sustained me

by the strength of His arm;

I was hungry,

and He has given me the Bread of Life.

O yes!

‘The Lord has done great things in me,

Fecit mihi magna qui potens est.

Thanks be to my God:

Deo gratias.”

(L S 1905)

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