Mary, Mother of the Church
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St. Jerome stated that ignorance of scripture is ignorance of Christ. Then ignorance of scripture is also ignorance of Mary. This is because “What the Catholic faith believes about Mary is based on what it believes about Christ, and what it teaches about Mary illumines in turn its faith in Christ.” (CCC 487)
By completely uniting her heart to God, Mary became Mother of the Redeemer and Mother of the redeemed. The Blessed Mother’s role in Salvation should not be underestimated. As Bishop Fulton Sheen said: …Our Blessed Lord Himself gave ten times as much of His life to her as He gave to His Apostles.
In my own life, Mary has had an important role in my search and desire to have a closer relationship with Jesus. Today and for many years I have had a special devotion to the Holy Rosary. Although it was not always that way. As a child I was easily distracted when we prayed the rosary together as a family. And eventually it came to an end. I was left with the impression that the Church no longer needed Mary and devotions to her. After all isn’t it supposed to be all about Jesus? As mature Christians, do we really need Mary and the saints?
Then one day, many, many years later someone put a rosary in my hand. I suddenly became conscious of the fact that I had been longing for a relationship with my mother. The Mother of God. I know that my own earthly mother had never ceased praying for me and my siblings. I am sure she wore out many rosaries.
Since then, I have received many rosaries from my family and from people I don’t even know. One that was blessed by Pope Francis, one that was blessed by Pope St. John Paul II and one that I inherited from my grandfather through my father when he passed away. It comes from the Holy Land and its beads are made of olive pits from the Garden of Gethsemane. I had so many that I started to give some of them away. My journey to Jesus has been through Sacred Scripture and Mary and the Rosary. The bible has a lot to say about Mary and her role in God’s plan of salvation and about the role she continues to play today in each of our lives.
Authentic Marion devotion always has the goal of bringing us closer to Jesus. Do you desire a deeper and more personal relationship with Our Lord? Then go to Jesus through Mary. Mary leads the way as a model of what it means to be a disciple of Jesus.
“Mary’s virginity and giving birth, and even the Lord’s death escaped the notice of the prince of this world: these three mysteries worthy of proclamation were accomplished in God’s silence.” St. Ignatius of Antioch