Mary's Perpetual Virginity, What's the Big Deal?

Conceiving the Christ as a virgin I can see as important. Born without original sin and not knowing man she was a pure vessel to be the mother of Jesus. I’m not questioning the teaching but I don’t understand why is the perpetual virginity of Mary necessary or important? There isn’t anything inherently sinful or unclean about husband and wife having relations. I don’t see it as diminishing her in anyway. It’s what men and women were made by God to do.

It isn’t that it was “necessary”.
It’s important however because it happens to be true. Truth is important. When some began to interpret the “brothers and sisters” of Jesus as meaning Mary having more children it became necessary to correct the misunderstanding.


** I don’t see it as diminishing her in anyway. It’s what men and women were made by God to do.

Mary’s Perpetural Virginity is one of the four Marian Dogmas…

…and* “their acceptance by the faithful must be proposed as necessary for salvation.”*

These dogma’s of the Catholic Church are not a statement on marital relations.

Mary is the spouse of the Holy Spirit. For her to have a child with the Holy Spirit and then have relations with another is adultery.

That an adulterer would be assumed into heaven and made Queen of Heaven and Earth is not possible. That our Lord and Savior would be the son of an adulterer is an absurdity.

It is necessary. If Mary had relations then Jesus is not the Christ and I am going to the Jews.


It diminishes Mary to say she wasn’t a perpetual virgin, when she was! She was pure her entire life! How could the spouse of the Holy Spirit be otherwise?

She deserves this honor, because it’s true, but some try to take it away and tell a falsehood, that she wasn’t a virgin when she was!

It’s the perfect gift to a perfect woman from our perfect God.

Adultery? So you are saying that Mary and Joseph weren’t married? That’s a new one to me…

Her perpetual virginity was profound, and extended far beyond mere marital relations. The Virgin Mary is the very embodiment of the First Commandment. She reserved her entire being entirely for God, to do His Will, and love Him above all else.

The Virgin Mary wasn’t just a natural virgin the way any young maid would be. She was a conscious, vowed, and devoted virgin that belonged to God. The Holy Spirit was her Divine spouse.

It is obvious in the Gospel of Luke, that the Virgin Mary was already this way, even before the Annunciation.

People that ask this question about the perpetual virginity of the Virgin Mary do not understand the implications of the Annunciation as recorded in the Gospel of Luke.

I not disputing the teaching, but your rationale is flawed… With all due respect, what does purity have to do with virginity for a married woman?

Roscoe - I have to admit that I have struggled with this too…Not the teaching per-se but more with the idea that it needed to be dogmatically declared.
However -
Along with the other very fine points made above let me offer this idea for consideration.
If Mary and Joseph had other children, some might have called into question Jesus actual lineage. Was he actually the Son of God or the son of Joseph? After all, there were these other children…
This would / could have been particularly problematic in the first two or three centuries as the Church struggled to grow and get established…in other words before Nicea.

By Mary remaining a Virgin - having no other children - it is much less likely that the question could come up.

Now - as for it being dogmatically declared - I can only say that I’m sure the Holy Spirit had a good reason for having it made so.

Just a thought.

Also - as a sort of P.S. on this…I once asked myself, if I were Joseph and knew what he knew when he married Mary…would I have sexual relations with the her??? My answer to myself was NOPE - no way am I having intimate relations with the one who, by miraculous intervention, bore the Son of the Living God…
Hence…Joseph being a righteous man…Mary remains a virgin…


From a homily by Saint Chrysologus, bishop (c. 380-450 AD)
A virgin conceived and a virgin brought forth her child.

Do not be disturbed at this conception or confused when you hear of this birth.

Let no one judge in a human way what is done in a divine mystery.

Let no one try to penetrate this heavenly mystery by earthly reasoning.

Let no one treat this novel secret from knowledge of everyday occurrences.

Let no one manipulate the work of love into an insult, or run the risk of losing faith.*


Never heard it put quite this way, but interesting nonetheless.

It’s not a matter of the purity of a married woman who has proper sexual relations with her husband. That is chastity within the married state in life. Mary was vowed to virginity, which is why she asked how she was to be a mother when Gabriel announced that she would be the Mother of the Messiah. Joseph feared to take Mary as his wife knowing that she was to bear the Christ, not because he doubted Mary’s word. He too was vowed to God in his service. In taking Mary as his wife he was to be her and the Child’s protector and to give Jesus a family within Israel. They never intended to have sexual relations with each other, even before Mary received the word regarding her motherhood. They were the exception to the usual married life, but they were truly married to one another. Others since then have entered into such marriages, which are called Josephite, in honor of Mary and Joseph’s relationship.

I don’t understand the obsession with sex and Jesus’s MOM! For one thing, her SPOUSE was the Holy Spirit so having relations with Joseph would have been, in a sense, ADULTERY. Joseph was to protect her virginity, NOT take it from her.

Their marriage was so Jesus would have a human father, a legal human father.

If you had been asked to be THE MOTHER OF THE MESSIAH - to carry THE MESSIAH in YOUR WOMB, and to RAISE HIM from infancy to adulthood, you would want to CONCENTRATE all your energy on raising HIM.

Ezekiel 44:2-3:

And the Lord said to me: This gate shall be shut, it shall not be opened, and no man shall pass through it: because the Lord the God of Israel hath entered in by it, and it shall be shut [3] For the prince. The prince himself shall sit in it, to eat bread before the Lord: he shall enter in by the way of the porch of the gate, and shall go out by the same way.

I don’t understand why it was necessary that the Ark of the Covenant not be touched by any human being, lest they die. I can understand that it was a pure vessel to hold symbols of Christ (as opposed to Mary, who actually contained the Son of God for 9 months), but why was it important that it be untouched? There isn’t anything inherently sinful or unclean about steadying the ark as it was about to fall out of a cart (even though it shouldn’t have been carried that way in the first place).

(Edited) I dismiss this one as one of another billion of baseless opinions.


Well, from a purely evangelical perspective, it is easier to believe in the virgin birth if you believe she was perpetually virginal.

But generally the Church celebrates virginity as an anticipation of Heaven, not because there is anything wrong with sex but precisely because it is so good. Giving it up for the promise of something even greater is a sure sign of faith, which is why it’s expected of our priests and religious.

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