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Luke chapter 1. 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. And Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit and exclaimed with a loud cry, "Blessèd are you among women, and blessèd is the fruit of your womb. And why has this happened to me, that the mother of my Lord comes to me? For as soon as I heard the sound of your greeting, the child in my womb leaped for joy. And blessèd is she who believed that there would be a fulfilment of what was spoken to her by the Lord." And Mary said, "My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Saviour!

John chapter 19.

Near the cross of Jesus stood his mother and his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary of Magdala.

Seeing his mother and the disciple he loved standing near her, Jesus said to his mother,

‘Woman, this is your son.’

Then to the disciple he said,

‘This is your mother.’

And from that moment the disciple made a place for her in his home.

THE PRAISES OF MARY (Iona Community)

My heart praises the Lord;

My heart praises the Lord; my soul is glad because of God my Saviour!

For he has remembered his lowly servant; from now on, all people will call me blest, because of the great things the mighty God has done for me.

His name is holy;

from one generation to another he shows mercy to those who honour him.

He has stretched out his mighty arm

and scattered the proud with all their plans.

He has brought down the mighty

from their thrones.

He has lifted up the lowly.

He has filled the hungry with

good things. He has sent the rich away with empty hands.

He has kept the promise he made

to our ancestors, and has come to

the help of his servant people.

He has remembered to show mercy to our forebears, and to all generations that follow.

Glory to God, Source of all being,

Eternal Word and Holy Spirit:

as it was in the beginning, is now,

and shall be for ever. Amen.

With joyful hearts we proclaim your greatness,

you who are God our Saviour.

From age to age your mercy has transformed our world:

The mighty are toppled from their thrones and you raise up the lowly.

The rich are sent away while the hungry feast at your table;

The haughty lose themselves,

yet the descendants of Sarah and Abraham share in your blessing.

You have done great things for us,

raising us upon the wings of eagles,

opening our eyes to the wonder of life, the power of love.

We ask your prayers, Mary, the humble maiden of Nazareth,

We ask your prayers, Mary, the sorrowing mother of Golgotha,

We ask your prayers, Mary, first to bear Christ,

We ask your prayers, Mary,

first to enter where Christ had gone before….

Pray for us, pray with us.,

Mary Mother of the Church

Hail, Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee;

blessed art thou among women,

and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus.

Holy Mary, Mother of God,

pray for us sinners now,

and at the hour of our death. Amen.

Gracious God, who gave joy to Elizabeth and Mary as they recognised the signs of redemption at work within them: help us to know the Lord deep within us and his love shining out in our lives, that the world may rejoice in your salvation; through Jesus Christ our Lord.

O God, for whom we long as a woman in labour longs for her delivery; give us the courage to wait, and the strength and discernment to know the right time; that we might each bring into the world your joyful peace through Jesus Christ. Amen.

Janet Morley

O God our deliverer, you cast down the mighty, and lift up those of no account: as Elizabeth and Mary embraced with songs of liberation, so may we also be pregnant with your Spirit, and affirm one another in hope for the world, through Jesus Christ. Amen. Janet Morley

O God, Father of mercies, whose Only Begotten Son, as he hung upon the Cross, chose the Blessed Virgin Mary, his Mother, to be our Mother also; grant, we pray, that with her loving help, your Church may be more fruitful day by day, and exulting in the holiness of her children, may draw to her embrace all the families of the peoples. Amen. (Collect for today)

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