One of the most common readings for feasts of Mary is the story of the Visitation. Mary, pregnant with Jesus, goes to visit her cousin Elizabeth, who is pregnant with John the Baptist. Their conversation is the source of some of the greatest prayers in the Church, including one called the Canticle of Mary, also known by the first word of the Latin version, the Magnificat.
It begins: “My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord; my spirit rejoices in God my savior. For he has looked upon his handmaid’s lowliness; behold from now on will all ages call me blessed. The Mighty One has done great things for me, and holy is his name.” (Luke 1:46-49)
Now, this is obviously one of the scriptural sources of calling Mary “blessed,” of honoring her and praying to her. But the funny thing is, the Church places this prayer in every day’s official Evening Prayer. All the priests and religious around the world, and many laypeople as well, speak these words every single day. To me, this implies that each of us is the Lord’s lowly handmaid, and yet the Mighty one has done great things for me and for you; so all ages will call us blessed. This is reason for my soul to proclaim the greatness of God.
What has God done for you? How do you rejoice in his goodness?