I am expecting my 6th child and I look on the feast of the Visitation with particular fond memories and love. I too, have been visited and assisted in my hardest pregnancies by Mary, like St Elizabeth.
When I was expecting my first child, my pregnancy became very rough in the last trimester due to a bad virus and a glucose tolerance test that nearly had me in a coma on the feast of the archangels...(I was praying fervently to St Raphael to protect me.) The day after, the hospital rang up and said it was a ‘failed test’ because according to their figures my blood sugar dropped to .7 and I should have been in a coma...”Come in and do the test again” they said. My husband calmly told them it would be over his dead body!!
I thought I was dying during that test and they did have to ‘admit’ me into a hospital room and bed rather than leave me sitting in the room with all the other pregnant women, awaiting their hourly blood tests for the big glucose tolerance test. I am sure St Raphael interceded powerfully that day. Unfortunately my body went through a series of strange symptoms for weeks after that experience. Every day my head and chest area would feel like they could explode...
But something beautiful happened. Our Lady came to me on the day when I had exactly 3 months to go in my pregnancy, the significance of it, was not lost on me. It was the Pilgrim Virgin statue that had come from Fatima. She travels from home to home in Brisbane so that families can pray the rosary each night and invite other families to join them in prayer. She usually stays for a week or two. Our Lady stayed with us for 3 months. I don’t know why, we didn’t ask for this, it just happened that way. Maybe there were no other families lined up to receive her after us at that time? The lady who is custodian of the Pilgrim Statue is a very good friend, my husband has known her almost all his life, maybe she just knew we needed her... I remember crying, because my Mother had come to me when I desperately needed her most. If anyone has read a particular posting of mine at Hidden Treasure will know a lovely miracle took place at the birth of my first child, through the hands of Our Lady...
Then the second time my Mother visited me in pregnancy (in a different way) was during my hardest pregnancy, physically. It was my fourth pregnancy and I had suffered a strange feeling throughout the whole of the pregnancy. A feeling as if my organs were under tremendous pressure, or were shutting down, such a strange feeling I can’t really describe. It was a grueling, arduous pregnancy that was testing my endurance! My due date was the end of August and so the feast of the Visitation was exactly three months before this date. I was aware of this and I felt my Mother’s presence once again and another blessed boy was the fruit of it all.
Mary is the Ark of the New Covenant, she is that spotless and pure dwelling place of the Lord that we see unveiled in Revelations at the beginning of Chapter 12. (Remember that John did not break his writings into chapters. Read straight on from Chapter 11 as if there were no new chapter and you will see more clearly...)
St Augustine once said, "The Old Testament is the New concealed, but the New Testament is the Old revealed" and this is very much so in the revelation of Mary, Ark of the New Covenant. The beautiful typology is between the story of the Ark of the Covenant entering Jerusalem with King David dancing before it and the story of the Visitation. When I first read this a few years ago it blew me away – what a revelation! Now that I’ve written so much today, it is better to link you to the person who will tell you this best, Steve Ray from Catholic Answers. Please stop by and read this, your day will be greatly enriched on this feast of The Visitation – Happy Feast Day!