Ave Maria, gratia plena

In those days Mary set out and went with haste to a Judean town in the hill country, where she entered the house of Zechariah and greeted Elizabeth. When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the child leaped in her womb.

Today our pilgrim group visited Ein Karem, a sweet small town neighborhood west of Jerusalem. The town is, by tradition, the hometown of John the Baptist and the site of Mary of Nazareth’s visit to her cousin Elizabeth.

This is a view of the countryside Mary (may have) traveled through.

The courtyard at the Church of the Visitation features mosaics of the Magnificat in dozens of languages, as well as one of the most delightful statues anywhere, depicting the pregnant Mary and the more-pregnant Elizabeth standing belly to belly. Lisa Green and I both love the statue.

Also in Ein Karem: an ancient spring as old as Mary’s visit, and named for her.

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