Saints for Saturdays

 The Feast of the Visitation of the Virgin Mary - May 31

The Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary is the visit of Mary with Elizabeth as recorded in the Gospel of Luke (Lk 1:39-56). It is also the name of a Christian feast day commemorating this visit, celebrated on May 31 in the West (July 2 in calendars of the 1263-1969 period and in the modern regional calendar of Germany) and March 30 in the East.

Marx Reichlich, Visitation, Munich, 1485

Mary visits her relative Elizabeth; they are both pregnant. Mary is pregnant with Jesus and Elizabeth is pregnant with John the Baptist. Mary left Nazareth immediately after the Annunciation and went “into the hill country…into a city of Judah” (Luke 1:39) to attend her cousin Elizabeth. There are several possibilities as to exactly which city this was, including Hebron, south of Jerusalem, and Ein Karem. The journey was about 100 miles, and Elizabeth was in the sixth month before Mary came (Luke 1:36). Mary stayed three months and departed just before John was born.