St. Elizabeth of the Visitation

St. Elizabeth of the visitationSaint Elizabeth was the Blessed Virgin Mary’s kinswoman. We hear about her in the Gospels. She had reached an advanced age without having conceived a child. The Archangel Gabriel came to her and her husband, Aaron, telling them that they would have a child who was to be the forerunner of the Messiah.

Shortly after the Annunciation, Mary traveled to visit with Elizabeth. When Mary called out to her cousin, the child, John the Baptist, leaped for joy within Elizabeth’s womb and The Holy Spirit wiped all trace of original sin from him.

Elizabeth was filled with the Spirit during this Visitation and proclaimed, “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb!” (Lk 1:41-42), a phrase we find in the prayer known as the “Hail Mary.” This early recognition of the outpouring of the Holy Spirit from the baby Jesus and the sanctity of Mary was a prelude of the work to come.

In images and medals, Elizabeth is almost always shown in the company of Mary. Saint Elizabeth is the patron saint of expectant mothers. Women who are with child can pray to her for help.

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