Pastor Weedon has one of the best Lutheran pastor blogs out there. Why? Because he, unlike some others of us, tends simply to offer great quotes, and thereby, teaches us and preaches to us all through them. Here is his post on the Visitation.
Tomorrow those of us following the historic one-year lectionary will observe the
Feast of the Visitation (which is counted among us as one of the
“principle feasts of Christ”).* The collect for this day in Lutheran Service Book has its
origins in the earliest German Church order, the vernacular Mass of
Theobald Schwartz in Strasbourg (1524 – see Reed, p. 562). Is there any
collect whose central petition goes so to the heart of what our faith
is all about? “Grant that we may receive Your Word in humility and
faith, and so be made one with Jesus Christ, Your Son, our Lord.” To be
made one with Christ through the reception of God’s Word (both audible
As that day the Blessed Virgin entered the house
of Elizabeth, with the Eternal Word’s heart beating beneath her own
heart in her blessed womb; as Elizabeth filled with the Holy Spirit
cried out “Blessed is she who believed!”; as St. John the Baptist leaps
in confession of Him whom he will serve as forerunner; as old Zechariah
silently laughs in a corner at the ways of the God of Israel; so do we
on the holy day of the Visitation rejoice that our God has visited us
indeed. That He has taken on our flesh from the most holy Virgin. That
He has come to us who could not reach Him in order that we might become
one with Him, and find in Him the life that never ends.
*McCain note: I’m reading a fascinating book that documents how Lutherans struggled against the Reformed in 16th and 17th century Brandenburg. These historic feasts associated with Mary were preserved and celebrated to counter-act what can only be described as a gnosticizing tendency among the Reformed.