If Mary is the Immaculate Conception


#1

…Then did she feel the pains of labor during Jesus’ birth?

In Genesis 3:16 we learn that Eve’s sin is the cause of labor in childbirth in all women after her. But, if Mary was conceived without Eve’s original sin, does that mean she was spared labor?

I know of no document that states this, one way or the other.

What do you think?

Subrosa


#2

Venerable Anne Catherine Emmerich a mystic, stigmatic, nun ( newadvent.org/cathen/05406b.htm ) who had private revelations of the life of Christ and Mary reported in one of her visions that Mary felt no discomfort in her pregnancy or birth of Christ.

That’s the only document I’m aware of. Now Revelations 12:2 does portray Mary preparing to give birth and having labor pains, but given the symbolic style of writing, those labor pains could have been symbolic as well.


#3

In Genesis 3:16 we learn that Eve’s sin is the cause of labor in childbirth in all women after her. But, if Mary was conceived without Eve’s original sin, does that mean she was spared labor?

Actually, Genesis says that the price is an increase in pain. That leaves a lot of room for interpretation, and it has never been explicitely defined by the Church.


#4

Hi Subrosa,

The Church has defined that Mary remained a virgin before, during and after the birth of Jesus. This speaks to physical integrity, but not directly to pain. There is really no authoritative statement on this.

However, Pope John Paul II did say in a speech that Mary experienced the pains of childbirth on Calvary, where she became the Mother of us all :

On Calvary, **Mary united herself to the sacrifice of her Son and made her own maternal contribution to the work of salvation, **which took the form of labor pains, the birth of the new humanity

See evangelicaloutreach.org/theotokos.htm

Verbum


#5

Actually, Genesis says that the price is an increase in pain.

If you mute your television set and then turn up the volume, haven’t you increased the volume even though it was absent in the first place?

If you read before that, after Adam and Eve ate the forbidden fruit God questioned Adam and Eve about what they had done a couple of times. Now, why would an all knowing God do this? Doesn’t it make sense that he was giving them a chance to repent? Instead of repenting, they hid from God and then tried to pass the blame. Maybe if they had repented immediatly God wouldn’t have grealty increased the birth pain. Probably once Eve ate the fruit she was cursed with birth pains however since she didn’t repent when first given the chance God might have increased the birth pains. This is speculation but it may explain the “increase in birth pain” line.

As for Mary I don’t think it’s defined one way or another by the Church. My guess would be no and “The Mystical City of God” seems to support that:
geocities.com/Athens/Ithaca/7194/book4c4.html


#6

Rev 12 and the woman have been interpreted by many over zealous Catholics as referring to Mary, but this is incorrect. For Mary hardly sprouted wings and flew off into the wilderness for a span of 31/2 yrs. Also the Catholic NAB states that the woman of Revelation portrays the church from all time. See the footnotes in the Catholic bible.

                           Also as one poster rightly said, if Mary was born immaculately free from sin, then when she gave birth to Jesus, she would have felt no pains from bring forth Jesus from her womb. The woman of Rev 12 is said to "travail with birth pangs." verse 2.  The pain of bringing forth babies for women stems back to Eve's disobedience and sin. So if one maintains Mary was born sinless, she could not be the symbolic picture of the woman portrayed in Revelation 12.

#7

If you mute your television set and then turn up the volume, haven’t you increased the volume even though it was absent in the first place?

Yes, and hence the wide range of possible interpretation. My point is that the passage doesn’t rule out some kind of natural pain, which would be expected in the process IMO.


#8

[quote=justcatholic]Rev 12 and the woman have been interpreted by many over zealous Catholics as referring to Mary, but this is incorrect. For Mary hardly sprouted wings and flew off into the wilderness for a span of 31/2 yrs. Also the Catholic NAB states that the woman of Revelation portrays the church from all time. See the footnotes in the Catholic bible.

Also as one poster rightly said, if Mary was born immaculately free from sin, then when she gave birth to Jesus, she would have felt no pains from bring forth Jesus from her womb. The woman of Rev 12 is said to “travail with birth pangs.” verse 2. The pain of bringing forth babies for women stems back to Eve’s disobedience and sin. So if one maintains Mary was born sinless, she could not be the symbolic picture of the woman portrayed in Revelation 12.
[/quote]

Well, part of the ‘punishment’ of Original Sin was also a mortal life. Mary did not gain immortality (that was given to Adam and Eve at their creation) due to her Immaculate Conception.


#9

[quote=justcatholic]Rev 12 and the woman have been interpreted by many over zealous Catholics as referring to Mary, but this is incorrect. For Mary hardly sprouted wings and flew off into the wilderness for a span of 31/2 yrs. Also the Catholic NAB states that the woman of Revelation portrays the church from all time. See the footnotes in the Catholic bible.

Also as one poster rightly said, if Mary was born immaculately free from sin, then when she gave birth to Jesus, she would have felt no pains from bring forth Jesus from her womb. The woman of Rev 12 is said to “travail with birth pangs.” verse 2. The pain of bringing forth babies for women stems back to Eve’s disobedience and sin. So if one maintains Mary was born sinless, she could not be the symbolic picture of the woman portrayed in Revelation 12.
[/quote]

Have to disagree with you on this one. Your interpretation would tend to imply that the Chruch gave birth to Christ. That the Church was the ark of His covenant. Remember we’re dealing with a different style of writing in Revelations. It wouldn’t be a streatch of the literary technique for the woman depicted representing both Mary and the Church just as the two witnesses in Revelations 11:3-14 represented the Law and Prophets, but also Moses and Elijah.

The Fifth Glorious Mystery of the Rosary is the Crowning of Mary, Queen of Heaven. How do we know this other than from Revelations?
Just my humble opinion, but I feel confident in my conclusion as it’s supported by other authors more learned than me. :slight_smile:


#10

Rev 12 and the woman have been interpreted by many over zealous Catholics as referring to Mary, but this is incorrect.

The woman could be the Church and Mary in Rev 12: 1-5.
drbo.org/chapter/73012.htm

Also as one poster rightly said, if Mary was born immaculately free from sin, then when she gave birth to Jesus, she would have felt no pains from bring forth Jesus from her womb. The woman of Rev 12 is said to “travail with birth pangs.” verse 2. The pain of bringing forth babies for women stems back to Eve’s disobedience and sin. So if one maintains Mary was born sinless, she could not be the symbolic picture of the woman portrayed in Revelation 12.

The birth pain referred to may indicate emotional, not physical, suffering that she felt for Christ and feels for us her spritual children.


#11

Oh Mary, mother of Jesus and our mother!

What burdens we place on you!

We as Catholics, who ask you to pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death! We saddle you with our incessant requests for prayer!

And the Protestants, who come onto these forums and bash, misrepresent, diminish and attempt to dishonor you, the mother of our Savior!

Mary, ever since we saw all your big YES’s in scripture, you have never ceased to amaze us and we have been unable to resist asking you to lead us to our Savior Jesus!


#12

I would guess that, if any, it was extremely minimal.
Here’s why, in a non-Biblical sort of way.
1-People back then did not have the birth fear that our American culture has. They didn’t see screaming ladies on tv. Birth was calmer, as it is in many cultures still that view labor as a natural event rather than a medical emergency.
2-My labor with my 2nd child was very low on pain (natural, unmedicated). I prayed for Jesus and Mary to be with me. I have no reason to believe that hers would have been harder than mine.

However, I think she deserves “credit” for going through pregnancy and birth, wether or not it was painful, as it was still challenging in many ways.


#13

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