Advent 2021


Wednesday of the Fourth Week of Advent: Magnificat

Mary Magnificat (1)

Today we hear Mary’s Magnificat, her song of praise for God. Mary makes this proclamation after her reunion with Elizabeth, where she shared the news that she would bear a son who would save the world. They both were overwhelmed with joy for their respective roles in God’s plan for the earth.

Whenever I read this passage, I think of my mom. When she put my sister and me to bed, we’d get to choose a bedtime song from her repertoire, our favorites being “Veni Sancti Spiritus” and, of course, the Magnificat. My mom still sings Mary’s song of praise and, just recently during this Advent season, “sang” the song to us via a video recording. 

Deep in my studying when I received my mom’s recording, I was struck anew by the words proclaimed by Mary sung in Spanish by my mom. In Spanish, we say, “Mi alma canta, canta la grandeza del Señor, y mi espíritu se estremece de gozo en Dios, ” the second half translating to “my spirit shakes/trembles with joy for the Lord.”

I am not Mary, and I cannot begin to understand the depth of joy for the Lord she was filled with. Yet, I do not have to look far to catch glimpses of this joy that Mary experienced. I see it in the love of my mother's eyes as she sings and I feel it in the memory of her arms wrapped around me. I see it in my many plants, that always seem to lean towards the light. I even see it in my physics studying, as grasping new concepts leaves me in awe of the created world.

In the few remaining days before Christmas, let us pray that we may notice God around us, and tremble in joy at that sight. Let us pray that Mary’s song can, note by note, become our own.


Note on the photo: A screenshot from the video mentioned, with my mother singing joyfully beside our mother.

Maria Bambrick-Santoyo '24

Maria is an undergraduate in Jonathan Edwards College.