The Holy Spirit asked me to write about the Blessed Mother Mary.
The Blessed Mother is believed by many Catholics to be the greatest of all Christian saints and exalted by divine grace above all angels. The main events of her life are celebrated as liturgical feasts of the Universal Church.
Mary’s life and role in the history of salvation is prophesied in the Old Testament, while the events of her life are recorded in the New Testament. Living in Nazareth, Mary was visited by the Archangel Gabriel, who announced to her that she would become the Mother of Jesus by action of the Holy Spirit.
She became betrothed to Joseph and went to visit her cousin Elizabeth, who was bearing John the Baptist. Acknowledged by Elizabeth as the Mother of God, Mary intoned the Magnificat.
When Emperor Augustus declared a census throughout the vast Roman Empire, Mary and St. Joseph went to Bethlehem, his city of lineage, as he belonged to the House of David. There Mary gave birth to Jesus and was visited by the Three Kings.
Mary and Joseph presented Jesus in the Temple, where St. Simeon rejoiced and Mary received word of sorrows to come later. Warned to flee, Joseph and Mary went to Egypt to escape the wrath of King Herod. They remained in Egypt until King Herod died and then returned to Nazareth.
Nothing is known of Mary’s life during the next years except for a visit to the Temple of Jerusalem, at which time Mary and Joseph sought the young Jesus, who was in the Temple with the learned elders.
The Blessed Mother was helpful in the first recorded miracle of Jesus performed at a wedding in Cana. Mary was present at the Crucifixion in Jerusalem, and there she was given into John the Apostle’s care. She was also with the disciples in the days before the Pentecost.
No scriptural reference concerns Mary’s last years on earth. According to tradition, she went to Ephesus, where she experienced her “dormition.” The belief that Mary’s body was assumed into heaven is one of the oldest traditions of the Catholic Church.
On 15 August, the calendars of Lutherans, Anglicans, and perhaps some other Protestants calls for the celebration of ‘St. Mary – Mother of Our Lord’. Roman Catholics celebrate the ‘Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary’ and the Orthodox the ‘Dormition of the Blessed Mother’.
It is tragic for Protestants, who believe in Christ, to ignore the role of the Blessed Virgin Mary in our faith and redemption. Some Protestants say they hold the Blessed Mother in high esteem. Their calendars even have a few days set aside during the year to honor her, but this is window dressing, as the Blessed Virgin Mary has little to do with the faith they confess. To ignore the Blessed Virgin is to ignore her Son, something no follower of Christ should ever do.
Protestants consider The Blessed Mother a saint of the New Testament. But she is no ordinary saint . . . she is the saint of saints. She is the Mother of God, a title given her at the Council of Ephesus in 431. The Blessed Mother is the example all Christians should emulate. Her “Yes” to the angel Gabriel is an act of faith for all Church to follow.
Protestants criticize Rome for declaring as dogma of the Church the Immaculate Conception in 1854 and the Bodily Assumption in 1950. “These things are nowhere in the Scriptures!” Who cares? Is it offensive to suggest the Mother of God was clean of original sin in a single act of grace by Christ whom she would bring into the world?
To ignore the Blessed Virgin Mary is nonsense for any Christian, because she is our Mother, commended to the Church by Christ.