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Our readings over the past few weeks have bridged the connection between John the Baptist and Jesus. Each from Luke’s Gospel, we learn that The Holy Spirit reveals Jesus as God only to those who believe.

In today’s reading, we see this very occurrence take place before the birth of both Jesus and John the Baptist. Our Gospel begins when Mary sets out to the town of Judah to visit Elizabeth. At the time of Mary’s travels, both women are with child.

When Mary arrives at the home she greets Elizabeth. At this moment, Luke writes of the infant in Elizabeth’s womb leaping as The Holy Spirit filled her.

Elizabeth exclaims, “For at the moment the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the infant in my womb leaped for joy.” She goes on to say, “Blessed are you who believed that what was spoken to you by the Lord would be fulfilled.”

This moment teaches us that God makes himself present to those who believe and Mary was among the first believers. During the season of advent, we celebrate Mary’s role in forming the church community as we know it today.

Just like our faith, CMMB was founded on a belief.

Dr. Paluel Joseph Flagg, CMMB's Founder

Dr. Paluel Joseph Flagg, CMMB’s Founder

Our founder, Dr. Paluel Joseph Flagg, was a young anesthesiology resident on the staff of St. Vincent’s Hospital in New York City when he lost his infant daughter, and later his wife. Out of his grief, he found solace in ministering and committed himself to a life of serving others. Following his first mission trip, he knew he had to do more and began recruiting volunteers and the support of organizations. Over the next 100 years, Dr. Flagg’s mission grew, and so did CMMB.

Thanks to Dr. Flagg’s belief in health and dignity for all, CMMB has grown into the organization it is today.

We remain incredibly grateful for every staff member, volunteer, donor, and organization that has supported us over the past century. If you’re interested in learning more about CMMB’s history and our founder, we encourage you to do so by clicking HERE.

In grace and peace,


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*Portions of today’s reflection were adapted from and inspired by the Loyola Press Sunday Connection.