Any info on Church Fathers on Mary?

Hello brothers and sisters in Christ!

I’m speaking with a “Ecumenicist” in a Christian Reddit forum, and he’s looking for perspectives from the church fathers on our Blessed Mother Mary. I’ve only come up with a history of Mariology and some un-cited source quotes, both of which have fallen short for this strong non-denominational fellow. I am seeking to inquire, does anybody know of good books regarding the early church fathers and their perspective and relationship with Mary? Or have any good links? Help a sista out!

Thank you
<3

If you google “Church Fathers on Mary” you will get a wealth of links.

https://www.google.com/search?q=church+fathers+on+mary&rlz=1C1GCEB_enUS854US854&oq=church+fathers+on+mary&aqs=chrome..69i57j0l5.3391j0j4&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8

Including this book.

oooeee thank you!

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From what I have seen, other than a few apocryphal gospels, which are sketchy as to their orthodoxy, there isn’t a lot of early testimony as far as modern understanding of Mariology goes. If anything, some of the early testimony such as the writings of Tertullian and Ephiphanius contradict Marian doctrine today. You really don’t see much written on the topic of Mariology until the late 4th - early 5th Century from what I have seen, and the nature of these writings go well beyond what the apostolic fathers wrote in the gospels. I am talking about St. Jerome’s writings here. The subject of Mariology really begins to go off the rails in the Middle ages and later with the contemplative writings of people such as Bernard of Clairvaux, Alphonsus Ligouri, Louis Grignon de Montfort, etc.

Not just for Mariology but for Catholicism in general, you might try Jimmy Akin’s book The Fathers Know Best. It provides properly cited quotes on 61 different topics, including Mary, Full of Grace, Mary, Mother of God, and Mary, Ever Virgin. You could also try the Catholic Answers search engine at www.catholic.com . They have the world largest free database of Catholic apologetics and I’m sure they cover the Fathers’ opinions on Mary.

Catholic convert Scott Hahn’s book, Hail, Holy Queen: The Mother in the Word of God, might be helpful. He mentions a few early church fathers (Justin Martyr, Irenaeus, etc.) in the second chapter, “Christmas’s Eve,” where he discusses the Blessed Virgin Mary as the New Eve.

Catholic convert Tim Staples’ book, Behold Your Mother: A Biblical and Historical Defense of Marian Doctrines.

Anglican patristics scholar J. N. D. Kelly’s book, Early Christian Doctrines, has a short chapter on Mary and the Saints.

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I would seriously recommend you get a copy of the Little Office of the Blessed Virgin Mary. It contains every “quote” about her that you could possibly want, from St. Augustine to St. Bernard. After being invested in the scapular of Our Lady of Mount Carmel and reading through the Little Office every day, I came to realize that the early Church Fathers had already answered every objection to our Marian teaching.

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For example, tomorrow evening’s second reading comes from St. John Chrysostom, who says:

Believe what we say about the Virgin, and do not hesitate to confess her to be both servant and Mother of God, both virgin and mother. She is a servant as the creature of him who was born of her; she is the Mother of God inasmuch as of her God was born in human flesh. She is a virgin because she did not conceive from the seed of man; she is a mother because she gave birth and became the mother of him who before all eternity was begotten of the Father.

She is therefore the mother of the Lord of angels and our mother; from her the Son of God received the human body in which he consented to be crucified. Do you desire to know how far the Virgin surpasses the power of heaven? Give me your attention then. They veil their faces as they hover in fear and trembling, but she offers the human race to God, and through her we receive the forgiveness of our sins. She bore him whom the angels glorified when they came with reverence to be present at his birth. Glory to God in the highest, they sang, and peace to his people on earth.

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Prayer by St. John Chrysostom before Communion
Lord, Jesus Christ my God, forgive the faults and sins which I, Your unworthy servant have committed from my youth to this day and hour, whether knowingly or in ignorance, whether by words, deeds, intentions or thoughts and whether by habit or through any of my senses. By the prayers of Your pure and Virgin Mother, make me worthy without condemnation to receive Your precious, immortal and life-giving Mysteries for the forgiveness of sins and eternal life. May the Eucharist sanctify, enlighten, strengthen and heal my soul and body and thus destroy my evil thoughts, intentions and prejudices. For Yours, Christ our God, is the Kingdom, the power, the glory, the honor and worship with the Father and the Holy Spirit, now and forever and ever. Amen.
Mary as an Intercessor

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