The Battle for Mary’s Position
At one time in our history it was a simple progression to accept mysteries in the church. However, the thought that since we are sophisticated and able to sort beliefs ourselves we no longer need the church to tell us what to believe anymore.
This is what has become a disappointing factor when the Mother of God has taken a lesser position in the acceptance of church dogmas. Today, December 8, the church celebrates the Immaculate Conception of Mary and why wouldn’t the church teach such a truth since Jesus couldn’t be born in the womb of any woman. God is Holy, and his conception would need to be in a pure vehicle that was sinless. Does that make Mary holy and Immaculate? Absolutely. The problem lies in the fact that Protestants believe that Catholics have made Mary a divine person. Catholics never taught that but some devotions may have appeared that way.
Certainly we have placed the devotions to Mary above the prayers and/or devotions to many saints. However, to place the attention on Marian devotions never puts her as a co-redeemer or another divine being to judge or present forgiveness for sin. She is the Mother of God, since Jesus is her offspring. Jesus being God makes Mary His mother.
Lately, I have seen and heard too many Catholics disbelieving in the holiness of Mary and the very existence of the dogmas regarding her appearances, the saving essence of the rosary, the unbelievable historical intercessions, and the fact that Jesus proclaimed her as his mother to John before he died on the Cross.
Undoubtedly, many who fail to accept her perpetual virginity and the position of the church’s adherence to Mary having a glorious position as she is; Mother of God, that unfortunately fall in the realm of Protestant beliefs and are one step away from the teaching of the Catechism and the beliefs of the Catholic Church. I don’t know that these beliefs place them as cafeteria catholics, but they do want to believe only what they feel, as sophisticated and can sort these things out themselves.
Pius IX pushed for this to be Church belief, Thomas Aquinas fought for the teaching, and it was promulgated 1854 by Pius IX. Mary’s Perpetual Virginity also stands as a doctrinal essence and these among other teachings are found in the Catholic Catechism. See CCC 487 ff.
Ralph B. Hathaway, Mary the Mother of God; Immaculate Conception - December 2021