Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, today we celebrate the feast of the Visitation of our Blessed Virgin to her cousin, Elizabeth, who had become pregnant earlier than Mary herself, when the angel appeared to Zechariah her husband, that she would bear in her old age, the one who was to prepare the way for the Lord Jesus, the Messiah. That child born of Elizabeth, as we all knew, is St. John the Baptist, who straightened the path for the Lord and brought many to repentance through his baptisms at the Jordan, and his call for repentance.
Mary herself had been pregnant by the time of that visitation to Elizabeth, after another angel, the Archangel Gabriel appeared to her and revealed to her, the culmination of the promised salvation that God promised His people through the prophets throughout history, that she would bear a Son who would be the Son of God Most High, Jesus Christ, the Messiah who would save all mankind and bring them back to God their Father who loves them all.
The moment of salvation at the time when the visitation happened was truly at hand, because the Saviour Himself is about to be born into the world, and preceded by another, John, who was born before Him to prepare for His way. It is through both John’s call for people to repent, and ultimately, the works of Jesus the Messiah, that the plan for salvation that God has crafted since the day that men fell from grace, came into perfection.
Yes, that is because, ever since our first ancestors, Adam and Eve, had rebelled against the commandments of the Lord by choosing instead to follow the foul advice of the evil one hidden as the devilish snake, and therefore brought sin into mankind and into the world. Ever since, men has suffered as a result of sin, because of our sinfulness, we became unworthy of God, who is perfect and good.
But God did not abandon us, and neither did He leave us with nothing and condemn us directly into hell that is prepared for Satan and his rebellious angels, who followed him in his rebellion. He loves all mankind, whom He created last of all creations, and whom He loved over all other things. It was a great sadness surely that has been in God’s heart, seeing that men who have sinned against Him, having to suffer eternal separation from Him, suffering the same fate as Satan and his angels.
Therefore, God gave us a promise at the beginning of creation, to Adam and Eve herself, that from them would rise a salvation that will deliver mankind from the hands and tyranny of Satan, the snake, and whom the deliverer would destroy Satan and his hold over us forever. This deliverer is none other than Christ the Messiah, the very Son of the Most High God, who was born through Mary.
God even said that although Satan would harass the children of Adam throughout time, but eventually the woman born from them would crush the snake under her feet. This woman is Mary, whom through her crucial role of being the Mother of God, and the Mother of our Saviour, she crushed Satan forever under her feet.
Why did Elizabeth said that Mary is blessed amongst all women? That is because of Mary’s own actions that allow salvation to be executed perfectly, for through her humble acceptance on the will of God, she had made possible the salvation that God offered through the coming of His Son, Jesus Christ, incarnate into man, through Mary, His mother. She is blessed because she, amongst so many other women, many with much greater wealth, and many with much greater power, was selected to be the vessel for the coming of the Messiah in this world.
Her own humility, and her acceptance of her part in the divine plan of salvation made her blessed among every other women, and indeed, that is why she also became our greatest intercessor, the greatest of all saints, because of her own purity in life, through her Immaculate Conception, and through her great virtues throughout her life. And who would be best to help us to bring our prayers to the Lord if not Mary, our Lord’s own mother? Remember that at Cana, through the urging of Mary, Jesus was willing to perform His very first miracle, which saved the wedding couple from potentially disastrous humiliation.
But be careful, brothers and sisters, that we do not glorify Mary beyond God Himself, because, Mary is the Mother of God, but she is not a goddess. We revere and glorify her because of her great virtues, and we ask her for her intercession, and that is why all the prayers that we have for her, so that she would bring her Son to listen to our cause. But we do not worship her and neither do we accredit her with the goddess status, as many people outside the Church had misunderstood, and even used this misunderstanding to attack the faithful ones in the Church.
Today, we celebrate and commemorate the great joy that accompany this Visitation of Mary to Elizabeth, because on this day, it was proclaimed that Mary is the Mother of God, the Mother of the Saviour, Jesus, who would come to save all mankind and complete the long planned salvation. Mary, filled with the Holy Spirit that had dwelled within her ever since the conception of Jesus, praised God in a song that we know knew as the Magnificat, as a song of pure and unadulterated joy.
A great joy indeed because the Lord is about to come and end all the works of evil in this world and on mankind. He who is the great judge would make all things good once again, and bring justice to this world, protecting the humble and the weak, and punishing those who are arrogant and overconfident in their own powers.
Therefore, brothers and sisters in Christ, today, let us glorify God, for His willingness to come down upon us as a lowly man through His mother, Mary, had enabled us to hope once again, for the eternal life and salvation, which Christ, through His death on the cross, had freely offered everyone, without exception. Through Mary, let us reach Christ her Son, and allow her to help us in our attempt to reach salvation.
For Mary, the greatest saint, is the perfect role model for all of us to follow. By following her virtues and examples, we can only become closer to God, as long as we do God’s commandments, by following the examples of our Lady. Have faith, brothers and sisters in Christ, for God will never abandon us, and today, we are joyful, and we are commemorating that completion of salvation, which allows mankind to be reunited once again with God, God who is love, and God who loves us, so much that He sent His only Son, for us, that we may live. Amen.