I’m not exactly sure what Marian Devotion is but it sounds like devotion to Mary. Why?
I’m not exactly sure what Marian Devotion is but it sounds like devotion to Mary. Why?
Marian Devotion is not a requirement, but there are several very good reasons for it. It is essentially the desire to be humble and compassionate like Mary, recognizing that she leads us to her son Jesus. We see this as very scriptural.
Recall that Catholic belief on the communion of saints - that the bible shows the church is one body (which his Christ’s body), not separated by death, and that we should pray for one another.
Who better to pray for us than the mother of God? Luke 1 - …“whence is this that the mother of my Lord should come to me?”
In addition - the bible directs us to honor her - “…behold from henceforth all generations shall call me blessed”. We don’t worship saints, but we ask for their prayers. That is scriptural.
Even the majority of the Hail Mary is found in Luke 1 - e.g. “Hail, full of grace, the Lord is with thee.” And - “Blessed art thou among women and blessed is the fruit of your womb.”
We also look at her example of perfect obedience to the will of God and to her Son- Luke 1 - behold the handmaid of the Lord, be it done to me according to thy word."
We see the woman in both Genesis and Revelation (with the crown of stars) as Mary - crowned a queen in heaven.
So, we are not trying to place Mary above Jesus, or trying to take anything away from Jesus - as some attempt to suggest. We also are not classifying her as God. On the contrary, we recognize that any merit she has is from Jesus and that she leads us to Him as His mother: e.g. Luke 2 - “Mary kept all these things in in heart.”
Could we come to Jesus without Mary’s help? Sure. However, JP2 and others have indicated that she is very helpful by her example, by her prayer, by her closeness to Jesus, and by her role in salvation.
In the following interview, former evangelical Dr Wesley Vincent explains he came to understand there was a conscious effort in nonCatholic chruches to do things that are “not Catholic” even if scripture shows them to be true. He also indicates that while most non-C’s will agree that God has a plan for their lives even before they were born (e.g. as in Jeremiah 1), the only person they wouldn’t grant such a preconceived plan to is Mary.
This is very inconsistent in the way non-C’s portray her as a vessel - essentially in order to avoid being Catholic. Non-C’s attempt to play down her role in salvation and often do not closely look at Luke 1. Hence, some cannot and would not honor her.
God chose Mary for a singular role.
He created her pure.
He deemed her important.
If GOD thinks she is important, that’s enough for me.
I’m not a person who would toss aside anything that the Lord puts forth. :shrug:
Mary has played the role of our advocate ever since the Wedding at Cana. There are times that God will say “no” to us but “yes” to Mary. She has been an intermediary since the beginning.
Some ask why it’s necessary, or preferable, to ask for her intercession. Some of these same people would not hesitate to ask others in this life to pray for them. We believe that people, when they die, aren’t really dead but live on in heaven, purgatory or hell. We believe Mary is in heaven. Therefore, we see nothing wrong with asking for her prayers.
She had a very special relationship with God, one of a kind. God, himself, exalted her. She was the daughter of God the Father, the Mother of God the Son, and the spouse of the Holy Spirit. She is the temple and tabernacle of the Holy Trinity. She carried God within her for 9 months, and is the Mother of God!
It would be hard to love Mary too much.
At the cross, we believe Jesus gave her to us as our mother, as well. We are to honor her and imitate her virtues. She has been given special privileges up and beyond others as Queen of Heaven and Earth. It would be hard for God to say “no” to her.
If you have her as your advocate, you are in a good place.
We can try to “go it alone” and not ask her help or the saints. However, would you like to go before the Celestial Court without an advocate? Wouldn’t it be like trying to go to court on earth without a lawyer?
Because Mary, the new Eve, is the mother of all the living, i.e., the spiritually reborn into the supernatural life of grace, as Eve is the mother of all those descended from her, i.e., all human beings born here on earth to their natural life but with original sin on their souls which involves a deprivation of the supernatural life of sanctifying grace without which we cannot get to heaven.
Most human beings are thankful and honor and love their biological mothers for bringing them forth to life here on earth. The Blessed Virgin Mary, our spiritual mother and the Mother of Divine Grace, plays a similar role to our biological mothers who bring us forth to life. But Mary in cooperation with the Holy Spirit brings us forth to the supernatural life of grace and her mediation does not stop at baptism but continues uninterruptibly all through our lives here on earth until we reach heaven analogously to our natural mothers’ upon giving birth to their children, raise and support them, feed, clothe and educate them.
We are followers of Jesus and if we have the spirit of Christ we are going to love and honor Mary his mother as he does. The fourth commandment of God is ‘Honor thy father and thy mother’. Jesus fulfills this commandment perfectly in regards to Mary his mother and if we call ourselves the disciples of Jesus then we will follow his lead. Jesus gave Mary his mother to be the spiritual mother of each and every disciple of his when dying upon the cross he said to Mary ‘Woman, behold thy son’ and to the apostle John ‘Behold, your mother.’
Devotion to the Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary
This Message was confided by Our Lord to Berthe Petit, a humble Franciscan Tertiary, born on January 23, 1870, at Enghien, Belgium:
“Teach souls to love the Heart of My Mother pierced by the very sorrows which pierced Mine.” (December 25, 1909)
At the Holy Hour (March 25, 1912) the Blessed Virgin spoke thus: “I have called myself the Immaculate Conception. To you I call myself Mother of the Sorrowful Heart. This title willed by my Son is dear to me above all others. According as it is spread everywhere, there will be granted graces of mercy, spiritual renewal and salvation.”
From “True Devotion to Mary” montfort.org/content/uploads/pdf/PDF_EN_26_1.pdf
You can have a devotion to any Saint, as they themselves exemplify and are friends of God, and some of God’s most holy works. Among them, Mary is a most singular example, being the Mother of God, who nursed Christ and raised him and kissed him goodnight and comforted him when he was hurt, and devoted herself to raising and loving him as only a mother could. She assented to God’s will, and is herself an archetype of what the Church is. She points us to her son, and as Mother of God is also a mother to us all, who are brothers and sisters in Christ.
The saints are all older siblings, really. Those who’ve gone before and found the right way, and seek to help us do the same. The Church is one community of believers: those on each, those in heaven, and those in purgatory. There is only one body in Christ, and we pray together and help each other out.
auctoris. These are some really good answers below that you are getting.
I hope they are helpful to you.
Here is another one. (the most insightful aspects are merely gotten from the excellent apologist Tim Staples. You can get his audios on this issue right here at Catholic Answers here.)
In the early Church there were very basic (and exceedingly virulent) heresies directed against Jesus.
A couple of examples would be the error that Jesus wasn’t fully God.
Another obvious error was Jesus did not really take a human nature unto Himself (the denial that Jesus was fully man).
But Jesus IS true God AND true Man.
Blessed be Jesus Christ true God and true Man.
HOW did the Church fight these errors?
The Church in part fought them by defining more exactly, what we ALREADY KNEW about the Blessed Virgin Mary, in more detail.
Staples puts it this way (quoting a message on a shirt).
Know Mary, know Jesus.
No Mary, no Jesus.
For example . . . .
In a foreshadowing, or “type” of Christ, WHO did God take the flesh of to make Eve?
Fortunately St. Paul tells us in Romans 5.
ROMANS 5:14 14 Yet death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over those whose sins were not like the transgression of Adam, who was a type of the one who was to come.
Adam was a “type” of Jesus.
But types are NOT fulfillments.
Types are lesser than fulfillments (in the case of Adam to Jesus, infinitely more).
What PURE FLESH did God make Eve from (from the side of this “type”)?
Adam’s PURE flesh.
Jesus is GREATER that Adam. Jesus is the NEW Adam
Mary is the New Eve.
Eve was the “mother of all the living” in a natural sense.
Mary is the mother of all the living in a supernatural sense (not because of Mary on her own. No. But Mary is this because of Jesus! Mary is who she is because “He who is mighty has done great things for me. And holy is His name.”)
LUKE 1:49 49 for he who is mighty has done great things for me,
and holy is his name.
If mere Adam was made from pure flesh, but INFINITELY GREATER JESUS was made from fallen defiled flesh, do you think the implicit prophecy would be Jesus is GREATER than Adam?
It would suggest Adam was made worthy to be fashioned of pure flesh but our Lord Jesus was not.
Jesus human nature was really “made” of the virgin Mary (c.f. Galatians 4:4) not merely according to “the law” but “according to the flesh”.
Just like Eve was really made accoding to the flesh from Adam.
ROMANS 1a, 3 1 Jesus Christ . . . 3 the gospel concerning his Son, who was descended from David according to the flesh
ALL Marian doctrines tell us ALSO about Jesus Christ.
They have catechetical value about WHO Jesus is too. Not just who Mary is.
And THAT’S part of the reason WHY the ancient Church used these doctrines.
To teach us about Christ.
There is more, a LOT MORE. (If you want, I would be happy to try to write more on this here).
I hope this helps you.
The BLESSED Virgin Mary . . . .
LUKE 1:48b 48 For behold, henceforth all generations will call me blessed.
Since I am part of this “generation”, I refer to Mary (often) as “Blessed”. The Blessed Virgin Mary.
The Blessed Mother Mary is the Mother of our Saviour, and also our adopted spiritual Mother. We pray Her Rosary in accordance with Her wishes , and to ask for peace, unity and the conversion of souls.
And simply because we love Her.
That is fine for a Catholic who believes that revelation, but doesn’t help someone who does not accept that revelation.
Likewise, devotion to Mary is fine for a Christian that believes the Catholic Church is the Divine Oracle and visible Institution founded and guided by Jesus Christ, but does not help someone that does not accept that Jesus left a Church (the Catholic church) and that he guides it to this day.
Devotion to Mary is a side issue. The REAL issue is do you believe the Catholic Church is Divine, both in its founding and its guidance today?
No one here would believe in devotion to Mary if it were not for the Church teaching this.
Right, no Catholic would be saying the rosary if the Church didnt approve of it, because the rosary and its 15 Promises are private revelations.
In hierarchical terms, Mary (human) is higher than us, but infinitely lower than Christ (God and man).
Since the ancients understood their lowlinness in relation to God much better than we do, they naturally were attracted to the 100% human mother, whereby Christ could be accessed through her compassion and lowliness. Men knew they were lowly and unworthy. Mary was a human being, sharing in our lowliness. Yet she was also the Mother of God, and she had her son’s ear! Thus, many were instinctively drawn to approach God through His mother.
Today, man is arrogant. We don’t understand our own unworthiness in relation to God. Thus, for many, praying through Mary to Christ is not intuitive. But to men of the 1st and 2nd centuries, and later, it was just common sense. This Tradition has been handed on for 2000 years. But that is why Protestants don’t don’t “get it”, because their theology and spiritual practices have their roots in the 15th century, rather than in the ancient Traditions of The Church
Mary as Gebirah and Queen Mother
Taken from The Crucified Rabbi: Judaism and the Origins of Catholic Christianity
By Taylor R. Marshall
The royal and messianic Kingdom of David held its capital in Jerusalem, beginning with King David ca. 1004 B.C. and was eclipsed in 586 B.C. with the capture of King Zedekiah and the forced exile of those Jews who were still alive. Prior to the tragic Babylonian exile, the true King of Judah and heir of David sat enthroned in Jerusalem. Moreover, there were two other important figures alongside the Davidic king in the messianic court of Jerusalem. Next to the king, the second most important person in the Kingdom of Judah was the Gebirah. This Hebrew title translates literally, “Mighty Woman” and refers to the mother of the Jewish king. Most translators render Gebirah as “Queen Mother.”
This Jewish Gebirah possessed a powerful influence over the kingdom. This power and authority flowed from her status as the mother of the Davidic king, not from her own personal importance. Rightly understood, the Queen Mother held a political office and signified the legitimate genealogy of the king. King Solomon the Wise instituted the formal place of the Queen Mother when he ascended to the throne of his father, King David. One of the first things King Solomon did after his enthronement was to place a throne at his right hand and enthrone his mother as the Gebirah:
12 So Solomon sat on the throne of his father David; and his kingdom was firmly established. 13 Then Adonijah son of Haggith came to Bathsheba, Solomon’s mother. She asked, “Do you come peaceably?” He said, “Peaceably.” 14 Then he said, “May I have a word with you?” She said, “Go on.” 15 He said, “You know that the kingdom was mine, and that all Israel expected me to reign; however, the kingdom has turned about and become my brother’s, for it was his from the LORD. 16 And now I have one request to make of you; do not refuse me.” She said to him, “Go on.” 17 He said, “Please ask King Solomon—he will not refuse you—to give me Abishag the Shunammite as my wife.” 18 Bathsheba said, “Very well; I will speak to the king on your behalf.” 19 So Bathsheba went to King Solomon, to speak to him on behalf of Adonijah. The king rose to meet her, and bowed down to her; then he sat on his throne, and had a throne brought for the king’s mother, and she sat on his right (1 Kings 2:12-19).
King Solomon rose to greet his mother and bowed down before her—not because he worshipped her as a goddess, but rather because as King he understood the honor due to the Queen Mother. Her presence in the court signified that Solomon was the legitimate heir of King David because she literally served as the flesh and blood link between father and son. Give the importance of genealogical dynasties, the office and role of the Queen Mother existed in many other cultures, as well. A similar office of a Gebirah was also honored in the northern kingdom of Israel. “We are going down to visit the princes and the family of the queen mother” (2 Kings 10:13).
Jeremiah highlighted the place of preeminence held by the Queen Mother by the end of the Davidic Kingdom when he wrote: “Say to the king and to the queen mother: Come down from your throne” (Jer 13:18). The end of the Davidic reign from Jerusalem is signaled by the dethronement of the Davidic king and his mother. The Queen Mother was so important that the end of the kingdom meant that she must also be deposed.
We see here that it is quite natural for Catholic Christians to honor the Blessed Virgin Mary. Her son is the true Davidic King and she is rightly enthroned at his right hand as the Gebirah and Queen Mother of the Kingdom of God (The Crucified Rabbi, Marshall, Taylor R., p.53-54).
Because there are many paths to God,but the Virgin Mary is a shortcut.
You’re more than welcome to see these excerpts from the Apostolic Exhortation Marialis Cultus: For the Right Ordering and Development of Devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary, of Pope Paul Vl, 2 February 1974.
The Church’s devotion to the Blessed Virgin is an intrinsic element of Christian worship. The honor which the Church has always and everywhere shown to the Mother of the Lord, from the blessing with which Elizabeth greeted Mary (cf. Lk. 1:42-45)…The Church’s norm of faith requires that her norm of prayer should everywhere blossom forth with regard to the Mother of Christ… It is based on the singular dignity of Mary, “Mother of the Son of God, and therefore beloved daughter of the Father and Temple of the Holy Spirit-Mary, who, because of this extraordinary grace, is far greater than any other creature on earth or in heaven.”(119) This devotion takes into account the part she played at decisive moments in the history of the salvation which her Son accomplished, and her holiness, already full at her Immaculate Conception yet increasing all the time as she obeyed the will of the Father and accepted the path of suffering (cf. Lk. 2:34-35, 41-52; Jn. 19:25-27), growing constantly in faith, hope and charity. Devotion to Mary recalls too her mission and the special position she holds within the People of God, of which she is the preeminent member, a shining example and the loving Mother; it recalls her unceasing and efficacious intercession which, although she is assumed into heaven, draws her close to those who ask her help, including those who do not realize that they are her children…
The Blessed Virgin’s role as Mother leads the People of God to turn with filial confidence to her who is ever ready to listen with a mother’s affection and efficacious assistance.(121) Thus the People of God have learned to call on her as the Consoler of the afflicted, the Health of the sick, and the Refuge of sinners, that they may find comfort in tribulation, relief in sickness and liberating strength in guilt. For she, who is free from sin, leads her children to combat sin with energy and resoluteness.(122) This liberation from sin and evil (cf. Mt. 6:13)-it must be repeated-is the necessary premise for any renewal of Christian living.
The Blessed Virgin’s exemplary holiness encourages the faithful to “raise their eyes to Mary who shines forth before the whole community of the elect as a model of the virtues.”(123)… These virtues of the Mother will also adorn her children who steadfastly study her example in order to reflect it in their own lives. And this progress in virtue will appear as the consequence and the already mature fruit of that pastoral zeal which springs from devotion to the Blessed Virgin.
Devotion to the Mother of the Lord becomes for the faithful an opportunity for growing in divine grace, and this is the ultimate aim of all pastoral activity. For it is impossible to honor her who is “full of grace” (Lk. 1:28) without thereby honoring in oneself the state of grace, which is friendship with God, communion with Him and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. It is this divine grace which takes possession of the whole man and conforms him to the image of the Son of God (cf. Rom. 8:29; Col. 1:18)… Mary, the New Woman, stands at the side of Christ, the New Man, within whose mystery the mystery of man(124) alone finds true light; she is given to its as a pledge and guarantee that God’s plan in Christ for the salvation of the whole man has already achieved realization in a creature…
Let the very words that she spoke to the servants at the marriage feast of Cana, “Do whatever he tells you” (Jn. 2:5), be a seal on our Exhortation and a further reason in favor of the pastoral value of devotion to the Blessed Virgin as a means of leading men to Christ. Those words, which at first sight were limited to the desire to remedy an embarrassment at the feast, are seen in the context of Saint John’s Gospel to re-echo the words used by the people of Israel to give approval to the Covenant at Sinai (cf. Ex. 19:8, 24:3, 7; Dt. 5:27) and to renew their commitments (cf. Jos. 24:24; Ezr. 10:12; Neh. 5:12). And they are words which harmonize wonderfully with those spoken by the Father at the theophany on Mount Tabor: “Listen to him” (Mt. 17:5).*
While this devotion is not required, it can come as a calling. Those, primarily Catholics, who have endured a lot of suffering in this world i.e. child abuse, addiction, guilt from past sin, fear/anxiety, etc., would greatly benefit from this devotion. Many times, the degree of suffering one has gone, or is going, through can lead to despair and Matthew 5:3 revolves around this; “Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” Marian devotion is not restricted to those who have gone through dark times as devout Catholics who want to enrich their faith would greatly benefit from it as well.
My understanding of Marian devotion in particular s that it can lead many into a much more intimate relationship with Christ. Through Mary, we can empathize with her relationship to Jesus as the mother of a child, and we can see Jesus through her eyes, from all the joys to the great sorrows. Belief is no longer just an intellectual thing, but also deeply emotional, as we learn to see through the eyes of a mother.
Speaking as a perfectly created person, who has fallen from perfection by choosing sin, I love the perfectly created person, who never chooses to sin. Our Mother Mary is an inspiration in her obedience, her grace, her self-control, her gentleness, her faithfulness, her patience, her kindness, her elegance, her simplicity, her love for God, and oneness with the Holy Spirit to name a few!
Have you ever experienced the pain of seeing a loved one go through unjust torture?
Our Mother Mary experienced this in its ultimate form, and she wants to help you have the peace and joy of Christ through you and your loved one’s unfortunate struggle. Praying the Stations of the Cross through the eyes of our Holy Mother is a tremendous blessing!
Thanks for sharing your question! It was a blessing to ponder the fruits of the work of our Holy Mother Mary! May you have a blessed day!