Our Lady and the Advent of Our Savior

The Visitation of the Virgin to Saint Elizabeth - Workshop of Goossen van der Weyden - nationalgallery.org.uk

A reflection on the inward life of the Blessed Virgin Mary can help us sanctify our Advent preparation for Our Savior's Nativity.

Dom Columba Marmion in Christ in His Mysteries presents to us Our Lady as the one who summed up in herself all the longings of humanity awaiting the Savior. Let us ask Our Lady to make us share in the holy aspirations that animated her during those blessed days that preceded the birth of Jesus.

The Church has willed—and what is more just?—that the liturgy of Advent should be full of the thought of the Blessed Virgin; she continually makes us sing the divine fruitfulness of a Virgin, a wonderful fruitfulness that throws nature into astonishment: "To nature's astonishment thou wert the mother of thy holy Creator without ceasing to be a virgin."[1]

Mary's virginal bosom was an immaculate sanctuary whence arose the most pure incense of her adoration and homage.

There is something veritably ineffable about the inward life of the Virgin during these days. She lived in an intimate union with the Infant-God Whom she bore in her bosom. The soul of Jesus was, by the Beatific Vision, plunged in the Divine Light; this light radiated upon His Mother. In the sight of the angels, Mary truly appeared as "woman clothed with the sun,"[2] all irradiated with heavenly brightness, all shining with the light of her Son. Her feelings indeed reached the high level of her faith. She summed up in herself all the aspirations, all the impulses, all the longings of humanity awaiting the world's Savior and God, at the same time going far beyond them and giving them a value that they had never hitherto attained. What holy intensity in her desires! What unshaken assurance in confidence! What fervor in her love!...

This humble Virgin is the Queen of Patriarchs, since she is of their holy lineage, and since the Child Whom she is about to bring into the world is the Son Who resumes in His person all the magnificence of the ancient promises.

She is too, the Queen of Prophets, since she is to bring forth the Word by Whom all the prophets spoke, since her Son is to fulfill all prophecy and announce to all people the good news of redemption.[3]

Let us humbly ask her to make us enter into her dispositions. She will hear our prayer; we shall have the immense joy of seeing Christ born anew within our hearts by the communication of a more abundant grace, and we shall be enabled, like the Virgin although in a lesser measure, to understand the truth of these words of St. John:

The Word was God... and the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory... full of grace and truth... And of His fullness we have all received, and grace for grace."[4]


1 Antiphon Alma Redemptoris Mater.

2 Apoc. XII, 1.

3 Luc. IV, 19.

4 Joan. I, 14 ad 16.