Mary’s long journey to Elizabeth in the hill country was dangerous for a bride-to-be. Once there, John the Baptist filled with the Holy Spirit before birth (Luke 1:15-17) leaps in his mother’s womb, and Elizabeth filled with the Holy Spirit prophesies. Elizabeth the older of the two reveals her humility, by addressing Mary in quite deferential terms. Her husband, Zechariah the high priest, lacked faith, doubting Gabriel’s message and was struck speechless until his son, John the Baptist was born. When Gabriel foretold Christ’s birth to Mary she said, let it be according to your word. She was an ordinary working-class girl, but she believed and was blessed. The message of Christmas includes mercy, humility and feeding the hungry.