The Raku Madonna Statuette depicts Mary on her way to meet with Elizabeth (Luke 1:39-56) in a most remarkable encounter, so intimately familial and yet of such great import for the human race. Mary, pregnant with the Messiah, hurries on foot to visit her cousin Elizabeth, pregnant with the herald of the Messiah. This Raku Madonna Statuette is a vivid depiction of Mary, bundled up against the elements and hurrying to this amazing encounter between two very pregnant women, whose unborn sons will change human history forever. The Raku Madonna Statuette stands 7.5 inches high, 3 inches wide and 3 inches deep. This is indeed an exquisite gift for almost every occasion and celebration.
Raku ware (楽焼, raku-yaki) is a type of Japanese pottery traditionally used in Japanese tea ceremonies, most often in the form of chawan tea bowls. It is traditionally characterised by being hand-shaped rather than thrown, fairly porous vessels, which result from low firing temperatures, lead glazes and the removal of pieces from the kiln while still glowing hot. In the traditional Japanese process, the fired raku piece is removed from the hot kiln and is allowed to cool in the open air. The Western version of raku was developed in the 20th century by studo potters. Typically wares are fired at a high temperature, and after removing pieces from the kiln, the wares are placed in an open-air container filled with combustible material, which is not a traditional Raku practice in Japan. The Western process can give a great variety of colors and surface effects, making it very popular with studio and amateur potters.
Mary’s Subversive Song of Praise – The Magnificat
The Visitation seems like such an innocent and unassuming event: one pregnant woman visits her older, also pregnant cousin, now close to giving birth. But this event is laden with meaning and import. Still in the womb, John the Baptist leaps for joy when Jesus, also still in the womb, draws near. The baby’s kick elicit’s Elizabeth’s question to Mary. Mary, in response, sings the Magnificat (Luke 1:46-55) – undoubtedly the most subversive song of God’s praise in human history: The world and its values will be upended! The rulers, the rich, the proud, the rich are now rejected! The poor, the hungry, the humble are now lifted up! The Kingdom of God is near! No, it is already here, gestating, ready to be born…