My boyfriend asked me “Where in the bible does it say its okay to pray to Mary ( The mother of Jesus)”
I expended the question to include all saints, because i think- if you’re going to pray to any saint at all, Mary should be high on your list, if not number one! so, I’m really asking-
from where has the church derived the understanding of devotion to the saints?
We understand that Jesus is the one mediator between God and man and that christians participate in that mediation through their prayers and sacrifices united to His.
the way my bf and i perceive the catholic understanding of prayer is this, for example: (-> means “Prays to”)
catholic-> St. Anthony-> Mary-> Jesus-> The Father
OUR church’s prayer trail goes more like this
me and bf-> Jesus-> Father
( Jesus is always the only one “Between” us and The Father, even if i am praying for my bf, I would only really be praying with him, to jesus, i would never be the one considered “To Jesus through my gf”, like Catholics say of Mary- “To Jesus, through Mary”
We know of the book of Revelation where the saints in heaven pray, but we cant think of any place where we are told to pray to anyone other than God, or given examples of doing so. Moses pleaded on behalf of the people before God and God changed His mind because Moses was his friend, closer to God than the people, but Jesus is the friend God has given us to reconcile us to Himself.
we have no problem believing that our brothers and sisters who share the glory of God in heaven, with God, pray for us, its in the bible. this does not imply to us that we should pray to them to pray for us some more.
i imagine that they pray for us in the same way we pray for those in purgatory? i’m not aware of anyone seeing purgatory all the time or hearing the voices of the souls asking them to pray, yet prayers go up for that part of Christs’ body. Is it because the saints are more united to Christ that they “know in full”?.. is this the full knowledge that Paul speaks of when he speaks of spriritual gifts and knowing then if full, what we know in part, now?
the evidence of people praying to saints in the past… doesnt really speak to us, as they could have been in error, as christians are able to be, in all generations.
a feeling that i have towards the church is that sometimes, the church says things are okay because the christians on the ground do it, so christians on the ground continue to do it because the church has gone on to declare that its okay. eg- processions, gifts to statues, praying to the saints. I dont know where i have been taught this but, an understaning i also have of the church is that the church allowed non- christian practices into the practice of christianity, to help people transition more easily into the faith and convert, diluting the pure and simple faith.
my boyfriend and i truly desire to serve and bring honour to God in the way/s HE graciously provided for us, to be reconcilled to HIMself.
I dont understand why a church that is supposed to be the protectors and preservers of the truth, would allow the world to effect her
please help us to understand.