The Blessed Virgin Mary

Devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary

The term "Mother of God", is commonly used by Catholics, but when questioned, few can explain it and may have some hesitation in openly professing and defending this devotion out of fear of idolatry or claims of it. This fear is unfounded and with the slightest examination, the fullness of this devotion can be understood.

The Mother of God

The highest title of Mary is perhaps "Mother of God". This title is meant and used as an expression of the truth of the divinity of Christ. To deny this title, to avoid it, to have shame of it, is to deny the divinity of Jesus Christ. Denying Our Lord Jesus Christ is no small thing:

Luke 12:9

But he that shall deny me before men, shall be denied before the angels of God.

It should be known that this Motherhood does not mean Our Lord was created, and certainly not created by Mary. The title affirms the humanity and divinity of Christ by asserting the motherhood and the divinity. Understanding the Trinity is impossible and this title directly references it, so the mystery of this title should not cause discomfort or scandal.

Queen of Heaven and Earth

The Apocalypse Of Saint John in Chapter 12 describes a wonderful and mysterious truth which begins:

Apocalypse 12:1

And a great sign appeared in heaven: A woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars:

That chapter should be read and considered in full. The truths are deep and it is overwhelming to consider. The fulfillment of scripture and the salvation of humanity should fill us with awe. The establishment of the Church, the Queenship of Mary, and the war Satan wages against this Church for all time on earth should fill us with urgency. We live on earth:

Apocalypse 12:12

Therefore rejoice, O heavens, and you that dwell therein. Woe to the earth, and to the sea, because the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, knowing that he hath but a short time.

The Blessed Virgin Mary is the Queen of Heaven and Earth, the handmaid of the Lord, the mother of Our Saviour, the one promised by God after Man's fall to be the cause of the crushing of the head of Satan. What scandal can one find in beseeching the Queen crowned by God for our salvation for her intercession?

The Holy Rosary

The purpose of the Memento Mori reflection focused on our Last End, the necessity of receiving the sacraments in the Church, and the striving towards God are not arbitrarily connected to the Holy Rosary. The Holy Rosary is a particularly important weapon against evil, including our own inclination to sin. One can search for quotes from saints, Church leaders, private revelations, and individual testimony about the Holy Rosary. Many books could be written on it. I will not replicate that content here.

One statement which is better than any I could make myself is by Sister Lucia dos Santos:

“The Most Holy Virgin in these last times in which we live has given a new efficacy to the recitation of the Rosary to such an extent that there is no problem, no matter how difficult it is, whether temporal or above all spiritual, in the personal life of each one of us, of our families that cannot be solved by the Rosary. There is no problem, I tell you, no matter how difficult it is, that we cannot resolve by the prayer of the Holy Rosary.”

The facts expressed above are true, but why?

It is not necessary to understand "why" all the time. Requiring a personal understanding of the reasons for something is a grave error. It reveals a lack of trust in God. Do not fear if you do not have a personal grasp of the reasons for something that has been revealed to you. Being given understanding and wisdom is a great gift, but faith, hope, and charity are to be preferred.

James 1:5-8

But if any of you want wisdom, let him ask of God, who giveth to all men abundantly, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him. But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea, which is moved and carried about by the wind. Therefore let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord. A double minded man is inconstant in all his ways.

The prayers of the saints, the communion of the saints, will not be explained here, but it will be demonstrated:

Luke 13:18-19

He said therefore: To what is the kingdom of God like, and whereunto shall I resemble it? It is like to a grain of mustard seed, which a man took and cast into his garden, and it grew and became a great tree, and the birds of the air lodged in the branches thereof.

All the parables about the "kingdom of Heaven" reveal that Heaven is not a place where God is hidden, but a place where created beings are invited. This comparison is consistent: Heaven is a place (or state of existence) where one is with God. God has elevated the lowly, and given glory to those who were not deserving, as we hope for ourselves as well.

The prayers of the saints, and therefore, our requests to the saints, are fruitful. By why the Rosary?

The Prayers of the Rosary and their wording should be carefully reviewed.

If you are mindful of how sin and evil are eliminated, then most of the prayers should be obviously fruitful. It is the most common prayer, the Hail Mary, and the closing prayer, the Hail Holy Queen that may cause confusion. Why is the most common prayer directed towards Mary and why then is the Holy Rosary declared to be so fruitful?

The root answer is because God willed it, but this is not a total mystery to us. In fact, it was fortold after the first sin.

Genesis 3:15

I will put enmities between thee and the woman, and thy seed and her seed: she shall crush thy head, and thou shalt lie in wait for her heel.

While the language of this verse is ambigious in some languages about the gender of who will crush with who's heel, when it is realised this is a promise of the coming of Christ, it does not matter if one understands it as "he shall crush" and "his heel". There was an opposition established between the Tempter and the woman and the woman's seed. The "woman" can be Eve, all women (who come from Eve), Mary (in particular), and finally the Church, our spiritual Mother. But, the central focus is Jesus, God in the Flesh, and therefore, the woman who bore Him particularly.

God has glorified many before Mary. Abraham in particular is given a great promise. His descendants were to be many and kings we to be of his line. Moses, David, the prophets, Saint Joseph, and many others were given glory and promises, but only one was to be chosen to bear God. This surpasses the "Holy of Holies" in the Temple. God spoke through the prophets, and to the prophets, God spoke indirectly through angels or signs or when God was otherwise hidden in some fashion. Meditation on the Incarnation should be understaken to gain more insight into the greatness of what happened with Mary.

Furthermore, the fact that Mary was to bear Christ physically, we are left with the mystery of the Immaculate Conception. This is the fact that Mary herself was spared from the effects of all sin from the moment she was created. This is why God is her saviour, because it was God alone who could have granted that grace and God did so by His own will. Note the scripture of Mary's rare words in life:

Luke 1:46-55

And Mary said: My soul doth magnify the Lord. And my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour. Because he hath regarded the humility of his handmaid; for behold from henceforth all generations shall call me blessed. Because he that is mighty, hath done great things to me; and holy is his name. And his mercy is from generation unto generations, to them that fear him. He hath shewed might in his arm: he hath scattered the proud in the conceit of their heart. He hath put down the mighty from their seat, and hath exalted the humble. He hath filled the hungry with good things; and the rich he hath sent empty away. He hath received Israel his servant, being mindful of his mercy: As he spoke to our fathers, to Abraham and to his seed for ever.

The depth of scripture, which reflects the will of God, is beyond our understanding in its entirely, but we can get pieces of it as God wills us to understand. An examination of Mary, the Mother of God, in scripture could fill volumes and probably not be complete.

The elevation of Mary is clear. We are reborn in Christ. Christ is the new Adam, Mary is the new Eve, and the Church is the Mystical Body of Christ and rightfully called "Holy Mother the Church". There is much opposition to this, in full or in part. This is part of a war:

Apocalypse of Saint John 12

And a great sign appeared in heaven: A woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars...And she brought forth a man child, who was to rule all nations with an iron rod: and her son was taken up to God, and to his throne...And there was a great battle in heaven, Michael and his angels fought with the dragon, and the dragon fought and his angels...And that great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, who is called the devil and Satan, who seduceth the whole world; and he was cast unto the earth, and his angels were thrown down with him...And the dragon was angry against the woman: and went to make war with the rest of her seed, who keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.

I have written little as I know that many words do not create more understanding. Studying the great depths of theology is not necessary, but hopefully it is clearer now why the Church has been given the Holy Rosary, and why the Holy Rosary is greatly promoted by the Church, in public and in private revelations. There is a war. On one side, evil, and on the other, good. Good will win, but where will we be? Surely those on the side praying the Rosary, meditating on its mysteries, can be said to be most certain of being with what is good.