Can Mary really be the "new Eve"?

We have been doing weekly Bible study with a Deacon who has a thing about St. Mary… he hit us with two new phrases last week… “New Eve” (Mary) and “New Adam” (Christ)

Now I can understand those terms as metaphors, icky ones (Mother and son ??? The First Parents?) but he said Gen 3:15-16, Jeremiah 31:22, John 19:26-27 and Rev. 11:19 were about the New Eve and New Adam.

To a lot of us, that seems a stretch and cherry picking… like we have to prove that Mary is super sacred (above and beyond even giving birth to Christ) … so we’ll find verses we can say are prophetic.

???

To us… Gen 3:15-16 tells of the first sin… and the ramifications of that… nothing more.

??? this is frustrating. Can anyone make sense of this, please?

Hi,

Your words: “like we have to prove that Mary is super sacred (above and beyond giving birth to Christ)’ sound flippant and cynical about someone we as Catholics love and revere. We don’t have to manufacture attributes for Mary. Certainly, many Christians do not realize just how exalted God chose to make her. But God exalted Mary far more that the Catholic Church ever could. The more we grow in our appreciation of just who Jesus is, the more we recognize how exalted she is. It’s the only way one can appreciate her.

You deacon is right on. What he told you about the new Adam and new Eve is simply what the Catholic Church has taught for centuries. There is nothing icky when you understand the context. As always, context it everything. The Church has also called her the arc of the covenant because she carried within her the fulfillment of the covenant.

St. Paul in his letter to the Romans (5:12-14) tell us that Jesus is the new Adam. Just as through Adam’s sin the human race lost salvation, so through Jesus’ passion its salvation was restored.

“Because of Eve’s disobedience to God and Adam’s cooperation with her, they lost sanctifying grace for themselves and their offspring. Like Eve, Mary was created full of grace. But unlike Eve, Mary remained obedient to God, just as Christ, unlike Adam, remained obedient to God. In cooperation with God, Mary became Mother of the Redeemer and, in cooperation with Christ, she became Mother of the redeemed as well.”

This is from a fine article by Kenneth J. Howell. I encourage you to read it.

catholic.com/thisrock/2003/0312sbs.asp

Fr. Vincent Serpa, O.P.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.