In this passage, we meet a pregnant Mary, who has traveled alone to visit her cousin, Elizabeth, who also is expecting a child. As they greet one another, the Holy Spirit moves, and the child within Elizabeth recognizes the child within Mary. Elizabeth shares with Mary a blessing: Blessed are you who believed that what was spoken to you by the Lord would be fulfilled.
I see parallels between the young, pregnant Mary of Luke’s Gospel and the young women of “the mobile congregation.” Mary traveled on her own, in a vulnerable situation, to visit her cousin, to share with her the good news of her new life as a mother. I imagine there are many young women in “the mobile congregation” who are traveling alone together, so to speak, also in vulnerable situations, believing that a new life in the United States is possible.
Especially at this time of year, Christians praise Mary for her celebration of new life and acting on her desire to be in relationship with her cousin. As we transition from a time of anticipation to a time of celebration, let us refrain from standing in judgment over the members of “the mobile congregation” who seek new life, some of whom are coming to the United States not only to flee life-threatening circumstances in Central America, but also to be with family in the United States. As Christmas nears, let us seek out reasons for celebration of and protection of our common humanity.