BLTC Press Titles


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The Haunted Bookshop

Christopher Morely


Alice's Adventures in Wonderland

Lewis Carroll


Further Adventures of an Irish R. M.

Edith Somerville and Martin Ross


Some Experiences of an Irish R. M.

Edith Somerville and Martin Ross


Mariology

by Joseph Pohle

Excerpt:

i Ctr. Pohle-Preuss, Christology, pp. 224 sqq.

SECTION 1

THE OBJECTIVE DIGNITY OF MARY'S DIVINE
MOTHERHOOD

Scheeben2 lucidly demonstrates the unique dignity of Mary's Divine Motherhood by pointing out, (1) that it confers upon her a rank vastly superior to that of any other creature; (2) that it constitutes her the very centre of the hierarchy of rational creatures, and (3) that it makes her an intermediary between God and the universe.

1. The Transcendent Rank Of Mary As Mother Of God.—The Blessed Virgin Mary, as Mother of God, ranks high above all other creatures; in fact she is in a category all her own, inasmuch as she embodies the most perfect type of created personality, just as the manhood of our Lord Jesus Christ represents the most perfect type of human nature.

a) As mother of the Divine Logos, Mary stands in a unique relation to the Second Person of the Trinity. The Logos is the true Son j both of His Heavenly Father and of His earthly' mother. This double consubstantiality (6/toowu'a),

zVoijmatik, Vol. Ill, § 277.

based upon His twofold birth, is strongly emphasized in the ancient creeds and conciliar definitions.

The so-called Athanasian Creed3 teaches: "For the right faith is that we believe and confess that our Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, is God and man: God, of the substance of the Father, begotten before the worlds; and man, of the substance of His mother, born into the world." 4 And the Fifth Council of Constantinople (A. D. 553) defines: "If any one do not confess that the Word of God has two births, the one before the worlds from the Father, out of time and incorporeally, and the other . . . from the holy and glorious Deipara and ever Virgin Mary, ... let him be anathema." B

The dignity of Mary's maternal relation to the Second Person of the Trinity cannot be adequately expressed in human terms. The Fathers try to explain it by applying to her certain passages of the Psalms,6 wherein the beauties of the Ark of the Covenant, the Temple of Solomon, and the great City of Zion are described in exalted terms. In fact they regard the Ark of Noe, the Ark of the Covenant, the Golden Bowl, etc., as types of the Blessed Virgin.7

3 This creed, known also from its natus." (Denzinger-Bannwart, n. first word as the Symbolum Qui- 40.)

cunquc, is an admirable resum£ 5" Si quis non confitetur, Dei

of the doctrine of St. Athanastus, Verbi duas esse nativitates (ras

but is not his work. It is of 5t;o yevv^ffets), unam quidem ante

Western origin, and was written in saecula ex Patre sine tempore in

Spain, against Priscillianism. Cfr. corporaliter, alteram vero. . . . de

Bardenhewer-Shahan, Patrology, p. sancta gloriosa Dei genitrice (0eo,

255. r6Kov) et semper virgine Maria,

4 " Est ergo fides recta, ut creda- ... talis anathema sit." (Denzinmus et confiteamur, quia D. N, ger-Bannwart, n. 214.)

lesus Christus Dei Filius Dens et «Ps. XVIII, 6; XLV, s sq.;

homo est: Deus est ex substantia LXXXVI, 1 sq., etc.

Patris ante saecula genitus, et homo 1 On these types cfr. the first of

est ex substantia matrix in saeculo St. John Damascene's Homilies on the "Dormitio" (els rty Kolw Jesus in Holy Scripture, pp. 12

b) Mary's Divine Motherhood entails an altogether unique relation to the First Person of the Trinity. She can claim one and the same Son with God the Father, not, of course in the heathen sense, as god and goddess, but in the Christian sense, as the Divine Father and a human mother. This miraculous relationship on the part of Mary may be technically described as her daughterhood. It forms the theological counterpart of her motherhood and is a prerogative peculiar to Our Lady, resulting in a special kind of adoption. God the Father cannot but look with unalloyed pleasure upon the mother of His Divine Son. She is His adopted daughter (filia adoptiva), who excels all His other adopted children by right of primogeniture.


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