Question about Marian Title

Is “Spouse of the Holy Spirit” an optional, pious, title for the Blessed Mother or is it a required belief in order to be in good standing with the Church?

She conceived BY THE HOLY SPIRIT. No Christian would deny that.

Obviously, Mary was not “married” to the Holy Spirit in the ordinary sense of the term (there was no wedding, etc). So the “bond of matrimony” here is mystical. But, if no such bond existed, the Holy Spirit would have been a fornicator, and Jesus would have been a bastard!

I don’t think any Christian wishes to assert either of these conclusions.

Hi David, thanks for the reply.

Correct, but I am asking about the title, “Spouse of the Holy Spirit”

Obviously, Mary was not “married” to the Holy Spirit in the ordinary sense of the term (there was no wedding, etc).

Correct and there is no marriage in heaven.

So the “bond of matrimony” here is mystical.

I think the only mystical marriage is between Jesus the Bridegroom and the Church His Bride. That connects the heavenly realm (Jesus) and the human (Church) and believers are the fruit of that marriage. But that of course is very different than saying a creature is married to her creator in heaven, or 2/3 of her creator, or 1/3 of her creator. :confused:

But, if no such bond existed, the Holy Spirit would have been a fornicator, and Jesus would have been a bastard!
I don’t think any Christian wishes to assert either of these conclusions.

:eek: I sure wouldn’t, nor do I, but then I believe that the concept of marriage, spouses, fornication, is all parts of the human condition and is not shared by the heavenly realm. The human condition does not carry over into the heavenly realm nor vise versa. That is why Jesus, while continuing to exist fully in the heavenly realm, fully entered our realm by becoming incarnate and allowed Himself to be subjected to the human condition. He became our bridge, our gate, our Way to the heavenly realm. Then when we are in the heavenly realm we will all join together without separation based on family, marriage, etc.

Which leads me back to my question, because the title, “Spouse of the Holy Spirit” forces us to view the Trinity in human terms. It is clear that all three members of the Trinity were involved in the conception process. (Two explicitly (Holy Spirit and the Most High, aka, the Father) and One from our greater understanding of Jesus’ role in creation)

The Holy Spirit came upon her, then it was the power of the Most High (God the Father) that overshadowed her and then Jesus (who has always existed and all things are created through him, even his own incarnation) became flesh within her. As far as I know, no regular human being creates His own mother, His own world, and then becomes incarnate through His mother. The problem comes in when we try and separate the Trinity. They have been one since the beginning of time. You can’t separate them spiritually, so Mary can’t have a “spiritual husband.” So I am not sure why we are throwing around terms like fornicator and bastard. The are not applicable here, since God is not a mortal and those things don’t exist in the heavenly realm.

Nor do I understand the concept that they have to be spiritually married in heaven, to avoid being guilty of sins on Earth where their not really married, because Mary is married to Joseph. Well if they are spiritually married in heaven then Mary is also married to God the Father, since He was part of the incarnation process. So is there spiritual polygamy in heaven? Also, Mary at the time of the incarnation, didn’t know about the Trinity. She only knew of God the Father through any religious instruction she received. Jesus said that nobody knows the Father except Him and no one knows about the Father except what Jesus reveals to them. So, Mary didn’t have any extra special knowledge of God, at the incarnation since anything she may have later learned about the Trinity she learned from Jesus. So, if Mary is the Spouse of the Holy Spirit, did she know? See the problems we create when we try and shoehorn God into our limited human condition.

And since Jesus is God and the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father and Son, ipso facto all three have been one since the beginning, then Mary is marred to all three. Think of the complications that would rise up from that concept. Does any Christian want to say that? I don’t .

So, back to my question. Is the title “Spouse of the Holy Spirit” just a pious title or is it a required belief?


Have you done a search for that title in the text of the Catechism of the Catholic Church.

No I haven’t. I didnt know the CCC was online. I will try and find it. I thought I would ask here before looking online again. My first attempt to look online proved inconclusive. Thank you.

The Catechism is not big on titles, and this title is not found therein (although the Catechism does refer to her as " spouseJoseph’s"). Mary has dozens of titles. Hmmm - that’s interesting. According to that article, Mary has nine titles in the Qur’an (including Ma’suma - “She who never sinned”).

Titles are honorific, not doctrinal. You cannot “believe in” a title (only the underlying concept).

I looked up “titles of Mary” on Google and came up with quite a list. Here are some:

Queen of Martyrs

Queen of Confessors

Queen of Virgins

Queen of All Saints

Queen Conceived Without Original Sin

Queen of the Most Holy Rosary

Queen of Peace

Refuge of Sinners

Seat of Wisdom

Singular Vessel of Devotion

Spiritual Vessel

****Mary, Spouse of the Holy Spirit ****

Star of the Sea

Tower of David

Tower of Ivory

Vessel of Honor

I looked it up because I never heard this said and we do the rosary often. There are more titles than the rosary allows, I guess.

As you can see, the title you question is indeed there.

I can only say that it is not a required belief for you to know or understand all these titles to be “in good standing” with the church. You only have to agree with the dogmas and doctrines of the catholic church - the most important being in the creed and the rest you could look up.

I just fail to undersand how one could be so concerned with something like this. How did you ever think of this? I mean, how does it help your christianity?

You don’t really have to answer. Just thinking out loud.


I just fail to undersand how one could be so concerned with something like this. How did you ever think of this? I mean, how does it help your christianity?

Hi frangiuliano115,

I have come across the title quite frequently, especially lately, but I’ve always believed it was just a pious title and didn’t really concern myself with it. It is not part of my Christianity at all, since it poses logical problems for me that I stated in previous post.

However, I am teaching my son more about the faith and now that he is older I am moving more in depth as to what is doctrine, dogma etc. I didn’t want to tell him that Mary being the spouse of the Holy Spirit is not something that he has to believe, if in fact the Church teaches otherwise. I was just trying to find a clear teaching on this. I growing up, never heard this title or belief, but in the past couple of years I’ve come across it numerous times, so I thought I would double check.


Forget about whether it is required for belief. Just choose to believe it.

Immediately the father of the child cried out and said, “I believe; help my unbelief!” (Mark 9:24)

God will be help your unbelief.


Link to the Catechism:
Link to the Catechism Search:

The title Spouse of the Holy Spirit is prominently used by Saint Louis de Montfort as well as Saint Maximilian Kolbe. Saint Louis uses it as part of his expressiveness of the relationship the Blessed Virgin has to each of the Three Divine Persons…daughter of the Father, mother of the Son, and spouse of the Holy Spirit – and you will find various prayers he wrote that utilize these titles as well as exposition of his thoughts on this theme in his writings.

The title is an aspect of the French school of spirituality and we see it in earlier writings as, for example, Saint Jean Eudes. The writings of Saint Louis will, in turn, though inspire other subsequent devotional literature.

The title however appears also in connection with Saint Francis of Assisi and is referenced in various writings beyond the French school, primarily in writings of spirituality or touching on Mariology.

I’ve taught kids catechism up to the age of 13. I’ve never seen this presented in any books I’ve ever used or have ever heard it discussed or presented as a teaching.

If you want my humble opinion, I’d kind of keep away from this for all the reasons you’ve intelligently stated in your previous post. I mean, catholicism can get sooooo complicated! There’s enough to do just trying to understand the basics.

Want to know which title I’d concentrate on?

Mary, the Ark of the New Covenant. It’s beautiful!

Think of what was in the Ark in the Old Testament and then think what was IN Mary –

Got this off the internet (googled it), I’m too sleepy to get into it more, and really this should be enough for anyone:

"The Old Testament tells us that one item was placed inside the Ark of the Old Covenant while in the Sinai wilderness: God told Moses to put the stone tablets with the Ten Commandments inside the ark (Dt 10:3-5). Hebrews 9:4 informs us that two additional items were placed in the Ark: “a golden urn holding the manna, and Aaron’s rod that budded.” Notice the amazing parallels: In the ark was the law of God inscribed in stone; in Mary’s womb was the Word of God in flesh. In the ark was the urn of manna, the bread from heaven that kept God’s people alive in the wilderness; in Mary’s womb is the Bread of Life come down from heaven that brings eternal life. In the ark was the rod of Aaron, the proof of true priesthood; in Mary’s womb is the true priest. In the third century, St. Gregory the Wonder Worker said that Mary is truly an ark—“gold within and gold without, and she has received in her womb all the treasures of the sanctuary.”

And with that, I bid you a

Buona Notte
P.S. i REALLY admire that you’re taking the time and effort to “grow” your son in the faith.

Nice post. St. Louis teaches us to pray the Little Corona better, in which we praise Mary as Daughter of the Father, Mother of the Son, Spouse of the Holy Spirit and Temple of the Most Holy Trinity. All titles which are appropriate in my opinion.

Nice way to change the subject but if you don’t want the moderator to lock the thread, lets talk about Spouse of the Holy Spirit.

Thank you Nita.:slight_smile:

I like that Fran. Thanks.

P.S. i REALLY admire that you’re taking the time and effort to “grow” your son in the faith.

Thank you so much for saying so. I am trying to give him a better understanding of the faith then I received when I was a child. :slight_smile:

Lock the thread??

I don’t even know what that is.

One thought can’t bring to another??

So I like a different title better, I can’t say it??

I’ve been here since, I think, July. I don 't see how speaking freely can cause a problem. I thought we were here to help each other along in our faith. That’s what I try to do. You make it sound like I’m doing something wrong or malicious.

Sorry if I misunderstood your intention.

P.S. I think THIS has changed the OP’s objective!

Our tireless moderator, Michael Francis, has the right/ability to close threads (preventing further posts, thus “locking” them) that have gone “off the rails” (ie, veered hopelessly and seriously off-topic).

MF rarely does this. Other Moderators in other Forums do this regularly, but MF respects and facilitates an open discussion. He will often take the time to edit/remove off-topic comments (and issue warnings) rather than closing the entire discussion.

Most threads that he closes are because the OP’s question has been answered, and further discussion is counterproductive. He has reopened closed threads when someone makes a compelling case to do so. MF is just and fair.

One thought can’t bring to another??

Yes. But if the thought is substantially off-topic, you can always open a new thread to discuss it. CAF is running a special - all new threads are FREE!!!

So I like a different title better, I can’t say it??

Of course you can.

Thanks for the heads up DavidFilmer. Felt so nice and free before - hope this doesn’t change me too much!!

BTW, I liked your post no. 2. It made me smile.

P.S. I doubt I’ll ever start a thread, even if it’s free! - don’t even know how if I wanted to!

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