Patricia A. Merlo, M.P.M.


Women of the Old Testament:

   as seen through the eyes of Mary


What did Mary feel when the angel Gabriel revealed that “all generations will call me blessed”?

The Bible tells us nothing of Mary’s life before the Annunciation, but we do know that “in every Jewish home, storytelling was the primary way of passing on their faith and traditions”. The Covenant stories of the Old Testament were remembered as a sacred place where God’s voice could be heard.  Like the women before her, did Mary reflect on the lives of the heroic women of Israel to gain strength for the days ahead?

We, too, can allow the Old Testament stories to capture our imagination in ways that help us find God’s presence TODAY in our everyday events and relationships.

During these Mornings of Reflection and Prayer, we will pray with the stories of some women who may have nurtured Mary’s faith and trust in God:

  • Hannah (whose words prefigure Mary’s Magnificat)
  • Susannah (falsely accused of adultery)
  • Rachel (who died giving birth on the road to Bethlehem)
  • Mary’s namesake Miriam (whose courage helped to save the baby Moses).
  • Time will be provided for personal prayer and reflection. Small group sharing will be an (optional) opportunity to encourage one another, as we remember and honor those who influenced our faith journeys.

Patty Merlo has a Master’s Degree in Pastoral Ministry and has served as a spiritual director, hospital chaplain and teacher for several years. Presently, she offers retreats and provides spiritual direction Check out more about her retreats at

(Page last updated 8/25/2017)


©2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021, 2022, 2023 Patty Merlo