Do Catholics Worship Mary?
to Mary, Our Mother Section
Do Catholics Worship Mary?
are often under the mistaken assumption that Catholics commit idolatry
in the "worship" of the Blessed Virgin Mary. They may point to
quotes such as:
sing unto thee, we praise thee, we worship thee, O God-bearer; for
thou has brought forth the one Son and God of the undivided
Trinity, and hast opened to us on earth the heavens." (St.
Andrew of Crete)
~ or ~
Virgin Mary...alone crushes all heresies, and is Our greatest reliance
and the whole reason for Our hope." (Pope Gregory XVI)
"proof" of their position that Catholics are idolatrous.
However, what such assertions really "prove" is their mistaken
understanding of Catholics' veneration for the Blessed Virgin. For
faithful Catholics give the highest veneration to the Blessed Virgin
Mary, they never put her above God, put her as equal to God, put her in opposition to God, or
confuse her with God.
term "worship" as used with regard to the Blessed Virgin
should not to be confused with the worship paid to God alone.
Rather, it refers to the highest degree of veneration due a
creature. As expressed by St. Thomas Aquinas, "Since,
therefore, the Blessed Virgin is a mere rational creature, the
worship of latria is not due to her, but only that of dulia: but
in a higher degree than to other creatures, inasmuch as she is the
Mother of God. For this reason we say that not any kind of dulia
is due to her, but hyperdulia."
expressions used by Catholics - such as Mary being the "whole
reason for our hope" - do not imply that our hope is independent
of Christ. Rather, they acknowledge the fact that Christ made his
coming to earth dependent upon the fiat of Mary - that, by the will
of God, redemption would not be possible without the Virgin's
faithful Catholics have trust in Mary's great intercessory power and
her dispensing of graces, they do not believe Mary has any power on
faithful Catholics acknowledge the Blessed Virgin Mary as the
greatest creature in all of God's creation, they admit an infinite
difference between her and God.
imply differently than the above is to misrepresent the orthodox
Catholic position regarding the Blessed Virgin. In fact, should a
Catholic actually "worship" Mary in an idolatrous sense, that
person's actions would be condemned by the Church as a mortal sin (and
worthy of eternal punishment if unrepented).
the other hand, orthodox Catholics do recognize with regard to the
Blessed Virgin that:
God's design, salvation depended upon her fiat.
is the closest of all creatures to Christ and gave flesh to our God.
has a unique relationship with the Blessed Trinity (Daughter of the
Father, Spouse of the Holy Spirit, and Mother of the Son).
she is entirely sinless - the holiest creature ever - and is worthy of
the highest honor that may be paid to a creature.
she is the "mortal enemy" of the devil and a powerful protectress
against evil spirits.
has been clearly demonstrated throughout history (and even at the
wedding at Cana), she is a powerful intercessor with her Son, Jesus. As Sacred Scripture
states, "the fervent prayer of a righteous person is very
powerful" (see Jms. 5:16).
by the will of God, she dispenses graces.
our prayers will be more efficacious if offered through her.
she is the Queen of heaven and earth, reigning with her Son Jesus, body
& soul, in heaven.
by honoring her, we are honoring God. ["Who could honestly
assert that honor paid to one's mother harmed one's own honor? On the
contrary, it increases it!"]
a true devotion to her is the surest means of reaching Christ.
Mary never leads anyone away from God.
countless saints and popes have recommended devotion to Mary.
true devotion to Mary may be a "sign of predestination."
["...devotion to the Virgin Mother of God [is] a sign of
'predestination' according to the opinion of holy men" (Pope Pius
XII, "Mediator Dei", 1947) & "...it is an infallible
mark of predestination to be entirely and truly devoted to her."
(St. Louis Marie de Montfort)]
Mary is our mother, and that by loving and honoring her we are following
in the footsteps of Jesus (surely Jesus obeyed the 4th Commandment!) and
we are fulfilling the Biblical commandment to honor our mother.
we are indebted to her for - and grateful for her role in - our
she is the most powerful advocate we can have at our judgment. ["Wouldn't you be
overjoyed if she was to
receive you at the hour of your death and
present you to her Son as her
friend? Would you honestly want Mary to look
upon you and say that she does not know
our honoring Mary fulfills her own prediction that all ages
would call her blessed (see Lk. 1:48) and imitates the Archangel who
called her "full of grace" and St. Elizabeth who called her "most blessed among
women" and "mother of my
the above, are you really unwilling to follow in the footsteps of the Archangel, St. Elizabeth, and Christ in honoring Mary?
Reasons to Honor the Blessed Virgin Mary
on the Blessed Virgin Mary
of Mary (Reflections)
Blessed Virgin's Intercession (Reflections)
as Mediatrix / Co-Redemptrix (Reflections)
& Grace / Graces (Reflections)
& Mary (Reflections)
Conception / Sinlessness (Reflections)
/ Incarnation (Reflections)
Queenship of Mary (Reflections)
to Mary / Devotion to Mary is Recommended (Reflections)
Should Imitate Mary / Mary is Our Model (Reflections)
Our Mother' Reflections
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