The Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe | iPray with the Gospel
In those days Mary arose and went with haste into the hill country, to a city of Judah, and she entered the house of Zechariah and greeted Elizabeth. And when Elizabeth heard the greeting of Mary, the babe 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 me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? For behold, when the voice of your greeting came to my ears, the babe in my womb leaped for joy. And blessed is she who believed that there would be a fulfilment of what was spoken to her from the Lord.”
As you will remember, this Gospel text comes after the visitation of the Angel Gabriel to Mary. He explained Our Lady’s vocation to her and also what had happened to her cousin Elizabeth. Elizabeth and Zechariah were expecting a child (St John the Baptist) in their old age. Mary didn’t hesitate for a second. She went ‘with haste’ to help Elizabeth. No one asked for her, no one was expecting her. But she went anyway. She had her own personal problems as well, she was pregnant with the Son of God… but she went all the same. Because when it comes to serving, Mary doesn’t hesitate.
How reassuring for her children to consider that ‘it is a thing unheard of, that anyone ever had recourse to her protection, implored her help, or sought her intercession and was left forsaken’. Even if we don’t ask for help, she comes to our aid all the same.
On December 12th 1531, Juan Diego (an Indian convert) was going to the Church in order to bring a priest to his dying uncle. He was stopped by Our Lady, who had come to meet him on the road. She listened quietly to Juan’s excuse for not having kept his appointment with her the day before. Then she said to him: “Listen, put it into your heart, my youngest and dearest son, do not let anything afflict you and be not afraid of illness or pain. Am I not here who am your Mother? Are you not under my shadow and protection? Are you not in the crossing of my arms? Is there anything else you need? Let nothing else worry you, disturb you”. What comfort to be so loved by Our Lady! Mother, teach me to pray with the same confidence of a beloved child who talks to his beloved mother. Help me to trust you and if I forget to ask for help… come to help me anyway!
Rev. George Boronat M.D. S.T.D is a Catholic priest from the Prelature of Opus Dei, working in the Archdiocese of Southwark in London. He is the Chaplain of The Cedars Independent School in Croydon, and also works as Chaplain of Kelston Club & Study Centre (Balham) and Oakwood Independent School (Purley). He has developed his pastoral ministry mainly with young people and is the author of iPray with the Gospel: Resources to Help Young People Pray (www.ipraywiththegospel.org).