Why the Visitation of Mary isn't working for me...

In prayer this morning our leader had chosen "the visitation" or where Mary visits Elizabeth to reflect on and frankly it pissed me off.


Mary Visits Elizabeth.

So I've been thinking about this reading today.  Thinking about how for a lot of Catholics this is a week filled with zeal about the Right to Life protests and I got pissed.  Maybe I am sick of fetus' having such a loud voice in my tradition when I feel like often women have no voice at all...


The person with the most power in the whole story is a fetus, a freakin' fetus. Sure a much beloved and prophetic fetus but his fetal movement is what validates Elizabeth's words.  Let me just tell you- that as I write this, as I have been thinking about this, as I prayed with this, my 27 week old fetus has been "leaping" all over my womb.  Because, frankly that is what fetus' do.

I am frustrated that Elizabeth cannot stand on her own authority. That her voice has to be validated by fetal John.  I am frustrated because so many women I love and know believe that their voices must be validated by others.  I find this heartbreaking...

How many women believe their self worth is validated by men?
Or their proof that they are good parents is their children?
Or their belief in the beauty of their bodies is validated by superficial constructs of beauty?
How many of us only believe in our own dignity and love when it is handed to us by outsiders...rather than listening to God's sacred voice within us!

I want Elizabeth to say..."Mary my sister and friend who is visiting me...you are  blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb." And then I want them to sit down, as pregnant women do, and gripe about being uncomfortable and swoon about the work that their bodies are doing. I want Elizabeth to share with Mary that since her arrival the baby has been moving at the sound of her voice...and how profound that seems to her.

But I want Elizabeth's voice to be one of strength, though not detached from her body or her fetus. I dream that for her.


  1. It was interesting for me to read your blog today. I've come to the realization lately that after I quit my job and was a stay-at-home mom for a while and then when I took a job that was only part-time and a lot less responsibility than I used to have, that I started acting like I needed to defer to Mark on a lot of things. I started sort of thinking of myself as someone whose IQ had dropped by 50 points just by not having my full-time job and the responsibilities that came with it. Just the place I was looking for validation I suppose.

  2. That first picture really weirds me out...

    I am always back and forth on stories of women in the bible -- gratitude that they're there at all? and then I start attributing better things to the stories than are actually there... and then I read them again and get really annoyed and discouraged because now my hopes have been built up by my own false memories. Sigh.

    I was talking to someone the other day about the "Bechdel test" for movies -- does a movie have more than one women with names, do they talk to each other at some point, and do they talk about something other than a man at some point. I am trying to think of any bible story that would "pass" that test.

  3. Ruth -- Ruth has conversations between women not about a man.


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