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What is the Role of the Virgin Mary in the Catholic Church?

Tricia Christensen
Updated May 23, 2024
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The veneration of the Virgin Mary is an important practice in Catholicism. To Catholics, the Virgin Mary holds extreme importance as the mother of God, the vessel through which God became man. However, there is confusion and accusation, particularly from other sects of Christianity, that Catholics worship Mary, and other saints. This is a conflict that has existed for centuries, since according to scripture, honor and worship are to be given to God alone, and “worshipping” the Virgin Mary would be in direct violation of the worship of the one God.

In fact, Catholics do not view Mary as a God, and have never done so. But many prayers and petitions are said to Mary to ask her to intercede with her son. The nature of intercessory prayer is that it is a request for a person in heaven to intervene with God and bring the petitioners prayers to the notice of God. The Virgin Mary, in the Hail Mary prayer is asked to “pray for us,” not to "grant our wishes." For a long time, especially when purgatorial views were common, it was believed that only the intercessory prayers of a person in heaven could lift people from purgatory to heaven.

The Virgin Mary is viewed as the ultimate compassionate human being, and holy, in part, because of her willingness to accede to God’s wishes. For the time period in which she lived, carrying a child without first being married was a monumental request. Further, Mary had to willingly sacrifice that child, surpassing even Abraham, in her ability not to interfere in God’s ways and means.

The teaching of the Immaculate Conception also bears mention. Mary is a virgin, is filled with God’s love, which creates Christ, and despite her virginity gives birth. She is the living example of the good God can do if only people will obey, and she gives birth to Christianity and Catholicism. This makes her both powerful and important. Catholics do not believe Mary is the source of Christ’s divinity, but instead the most willing and compassionate servant of God, save Christ.

Another important aspect of the Virgin Mary is that she is born without "original sin." Today original sin is likely to be dismissed by most Catholics as an outdated concept. Up until Vatican II, Catholics believed all who were not baptized retained the original sin of Adam and Eve’s disobedience to God in Genesis. Unbaptized children had to remain outside the gates of heaven in Limbo, for eternity for failure to be baptized.

Though the Catholic Church depended on the doctrine of original sin as a premise for baptism, insistence that Mary was born without original sin was an important teaching. Only a sinless individual was an appropriate vessel for Christ. There is considerable dispute on Mary's sexual relationship with Joseph after the birth of Christ. While some Catholics believe she retained her virginity, most think Jesus had siblings.

In a practical sense, Mary also supports the woman’s role in the church. Mary is a servant, a mother and lives free of sin. She does what God tells her to do. Women should be servants, mothers, caretakers, and strive for sinless living. Copying Mary assumes that women do not take a leadership role in the Church, but instead a role of servitude. This reinforces Catholic doctrine that women are not meant to be priests.

Lastly, most Catholics feel a strong personal relationship to Mary, because she is in a sense, mother to all. To the Father, represented as God, Christ and the Holy Spirit, you would bring your large concerns. Prayers for Mary’s intercessions can bring up the small wounds and hurts that may not be big enough to talk to God about. Just as a child might run to a mother for comfort after a fall, many Catholics feel Mary is accessible in this way as a mother figure. Catholics turn to her for support, remembering she is fully human and not divine, and ask for her prayers, her compassion and love, knowing her nature to be one of eternal hope and mercy.

CulturalWorld.org is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Tricia Christensen
By Tricia Christensen
With a Literature degree from Sonoma State University and years of experience as a CulturalWorld.org contributor, Tricia Christensen is based in Northern California and brings a wealth of knowledge and passion to her writing. Her wide-ranging interests include reading, writing, medicine, art, film, history, politics, ethics, and religion, all of which she incorporates into her informative articles. Tricia is currently working on her first novel.
Discussion Comments
By anon992020 — On Aug 06, 2015

I hate to be harsh, but if you pray to something, make statues of , praise, burn candles to, give blasphemous names to like"Queen of Heaven" and form cults and sects to that person or thing, that is worship, and it is very wrong.

By anon992019 — On Aug 06, 2015

People are so, so misguided. Although they think they are learned, they are only learned in the error of Catholicism. The argument that certain things were done in the early church age doesn't mean they were right. Paul and Peter both warned of errors creeping into the true worship of the only one worthy of prayer and worship: Jesus the Christ the only begotten son of God the Father!

By anon354300 — On Nov 07, 2013

Very well written. Helped me a lot! Thanks.

By anon336283 — On May 27, 2013

Why do you interfere with my belief of Mary? Is there a problem? Has my belief killed you? If you don't believe in me praying to Mary, why are you getting involved in what we believe, not you? Live your life while worshiping God. And to those who are making up lies about the Catholic Church, look up the Ten Commandments. God sees all and knows all. He knows the truth and he sees your persecution and lies against us. Just know he's watching and will always remember that. Now go live you faith.

By anon336261 — On May 27, 2013

People attack Mary saying she had more children besides Jesus. Attackers say, "Is not this the carpenter’s son? Is not his mother called Mary? And are not his brothers James and Joseph and Simon and Judas? And are not all his sisters with us? Where then did this man get all these things?” Matthew 13:55–56." Yes, the Bible does state that, but it's what might you call your best friend. We Christians call ourselves brothers and sisters, but that does not mean our mothers had more children. It means you are very close or united by baptism. Besides, we honor Mary because she was the Mother of Jesus.

Mary could have said no to Gabriel, but she accepted God's plan knowing she could be stoned to death. Also you must show respect to your own mother. You must respect your mother who brought you to life. I respect and honor my mother, but I do not worship her. The same way is with Mary. There were many women God could've chosen but chose Mary. Jesus respected and honored Mary. If He did, why should you not?

By anon327189 — On Mar 26, 2013

To all non-believers, just give the Virgin Mary a chance. she listens. She is non-judgmental, very caring and wise. She has the inside track. She will intercede on your behalf or your loved ones. Believe me, she really cares! What do you have to lose? For a lot of us, a lot. Thank you, Mary! I am now able to walk again, while having MS. She saved my life!

By anon324446 — On Mar 10, 2013

My granddaughter, who is 5, claims she sees her guardian angel. This has happened twice. She is very religious as is her family and she is very accurate in her description. Could it be true? She knows what lying means and claims this has really happened. Could it be true?

By anon322235 — On Feb 26, 2013

So much on this can be put to one side until this post is revisited and clearly answered.

@reckless, post 38: Three very valid and concise points that don't really leave much room for interpretation.

By anon308092 — On Dec 09, 2012

Gabriel the angel told Mary she was blessed by God. The Virgin Mary is the mother of Jesus, who is God. Therefore, she is the Mother of God. (not the creator of God). It makes complete sense. Mary was chosen by God and He made her special. She is the perfect example of a good Christian. She takes care of us and she prays for us.

If you love Jesus, you must love his mother as well.

Mary is in the first book of the Bible. In Genesis 3:15, God specifically tells the serpent that the day will come when he will put enmity (direct opposition) between the woman and the serpent, between her offspring and the serpent's offspring.

Mary is there when Jesus is born and Mary is there when Jesus died on the Cross.

Not everything about Jesus's life is written in the Bible. Tradition teaches us many things about his life. There is plenty of evidence that the early Christians had devotion for the Virgin Mary.

Mother of God, pray for us.

By anon306483 — On Nov 30, 2012

As an Anglican, I fall somewhere in the middle. I recognize the place of unique honor which the Blessed Virgin Mary has been granted by virtue of her humble obedience to God and integral role in the central event of all history. However, I do think that certain Marian devotions among my Roman Catholic brothers and sisters can go too far, if the focus becomes centered on her in place of her Son, and certainly God is never “too busy” to hear our prayers. It is not necessary to go through Mary to get to God, “for through Him (Christ) we all have access to the Father by the same Spirit”.

That said, I think it a tragedy that many Protestants react so forcefully (and often with ignorance) to Catholic devotion to Mary. The effect can border on outright disrespect, with people saying things like, “There was nothing special about her” or “She was just as sinful as anyone else.” I have to think that such a low regard for Mary is a cause of grief to our Lord. I mean, this is His mother we’re talking about! Jesus is the eternal Word, the Son of God, but He is also truly the son of Mary. How can any Christian claim that Mary is just another face in the crowd of saints, no different from me or you? Yes, she was indeed human (personally, I don’t really believe in the Immaculate Conception, and I’m not quite sure about the perpetual virginity and Assumption, though the doctrines don’t bother me), but how can we deny that her relation to Jesus is truly unlike that of any other human? And by extension, I believe that Jesus has a unique love for her.

That brings up one final subject: seeking the intercession of Mary. If we believe that the “the prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective”, i.e., that such a man has God’s ear, so to speak, doesn’t it make sense to believe that the prayers of our Lord’s own mother are going to be pretty effective? And as to the criticism that it is somehow idolatrous or blasphemous to seek intercession from anyone but Christ, I find it hard to believe that such critics never seek the intercessory prayers of their Christian friends and family. We do this all the time, asking friends to pray for us or someone or some need. Why should we not also ask for the prayers of our friends and fellow saints who are now “before the throne of God”? The fact that they are no longer walking around on this earth does not mean that they are gone, deaf, and totally unconnected. All of us - past, present, and future - comprise the communion of saints. And are those who have passed into the nearer presence of God not perhaps more alive than we? As our Lord said, “He is not the God of the dead, but of the living.”

By reckless — On Sep 08, 2012

@anon288415: "Same God," you say? I beg to differ. If I were to go by your standards, I would find myself praying to some physically dead human for no good reason at all. The Bible clearly states that just as there is one God, humanity has one mediator, Jesus Christ of Nazareth. Following your flawed logic that Mary is "co-Redemptrix," there should be multitudes of demi-gods popping up all over the world.

By anon288415 — On Aug 30, 2012

Like it was stated in the article, for centuries the conflict has been there, so don't waste your time trying to understand what you will not understand. If you're not Catholic, stay that way.. For proud Catholics like me, then what we believe is what we believe.

Instead of being busy judging Catholics, focus on your own spiritual life. Who says because what you do is different from what Catholics do, then it makes what you do holy/right/perfect? Let's not give the Devil room to come in between the churches and continue helping us drift apart.

We all believe in the same God. How you go to him is between you and Him so just mind your relationship and your business and you will be good.

By abca1958 — On Aug 12, 2012

The Bible tells us that the Holy Spirit, not Mary, intercedes on our behalf with our Heavenly Father. Doesn't it contradict God's Word by asking Mary to intercede for us?

By anon277241 — On Jun 28, 2012

Mary is the second greatest of all saints after Jesus.

By anon270212 — On May 21, 2012

@Anon665: You seem to misunderstand the meaning of the word, "until". You speak as though it means x happened before and y necessarily occurred afterward. That is not technically what the word means. It in no way implies that something different happened afterward; it only describes what occurred before.

"Therefore Michal the daughter of Saul had no child until the day of her death." -2Samuel6:23

If the word "until" is as you understand it, then the above verse is nonsensical, because it says that Michal had children after she died.

By anon256883 — On Mar 23, 2012

I talked today with one of my colleagues. We were talking about Whitney Huston, the way she died and so on, and so forth, and I told him that I really surprised by the way her friend and pastor of the Baptist Church was claiming that Whitney is in heaven even though she died from an overdose.

Then he looked at me and said, "Well someone could pray for her and she can be saved." I asked him, "Do you really believe that you can be saved through someone's prayer, even though the bible says, 'And it is appointed unto men once die, but after this the judgment' Hebrews.9:27.

There is no place in the bible stating that dead people have hope after life. Jesus never taught it, nor the Apostles, nor other people that we have to pray for dead people, but he were more concerned that we should think about our souls now, but not later. Remember about the poor man Lazarus?

But my colleagues was a bit shocked that I'm not praying for the dead people. I told him that we can help with our prayer only those who are still here with us and alive, but when someone is dead, it is too late to pray or do anything.

Then we started talking about holy Mary. I asked him why one needed to pray to Mary in order to be saved? He told me that she can intercede for us, as the mother of God, but he doesn't understand one thing as other Catholic people that interceding is the same as being a mediator between God and people, while the Bible says that the only person who can intercede for us is Jesus and there is no other name.

People open your eyes and read the bible. We do have to respect Mary as mother of Jesus, but remember Jesus was before her. He always existed and the whole story is not that Mary give birth to Jesus. It is that God manifested in the flesh and came into this world, took our sins on a cross and died for us.

By praying to Mary, you are pushing Jesus outside. Do not let the devil steal your life and personal relationship with Jesus. Read the whole bible, especially the new testament, and you will not see in any place where Apostles were teaching that we should pray to saints and to Mary in order to be forgiven. There is no such place. Please do not let the devil steal those blessings from you which Jesus gives to every human being by praying to Mary and other saints. There are a lot of people out there going to hell because of this doctrine and idol worship. Give your life to Jesus and that's only how you can be saved. God bless you all.

By anon253190 — On Mar 08, 2012

The Bible says "All have sinned..." um, this includes Mary.

By anon242073 — On Jan 21, 2012

Who believes this kind on fairy tale? So, the dogma is because Eve brought original sin to "mankind", not humankind now, Mary somehow was born without original sin from her mother then begot a deity to redeem "mankind" through a "virgin" birth.

So, the real question is, since the original sin is from woman giving birth to "mankind" and Mary was born without original sin, does that mean her earthly father gave birth to her?

By reckless — On Nov 13, 2011

What are you saying? It is God who loves us, saved us, and feeds us. It is true that Mary was favored by God, but she never was a holy being. Luke 1:47 clearly identifies Mary to be your average human being who needed Jesus to save her. “...and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior...”

She was a virgin when she conceived Jesus through the Holy Spirit, but at some point she ceased to be one. This is evident as Jesus is said to have half-brothers and half-sisters.

"Is not this the carpenter’s son? Is not his mother called Mary? And are not his brothers James and Joseph and Simon and Judas? And are not all his sisters with us? Where then did this man get all these things?” Matthew 13:55–56.

Why are you making a point as though Eve was the bad mother, who fell out of her grace and Mary was the good mother who kept her innocence? This is not so, as Mary is your regular human being with no holiness attached. Plus, it was God who ordered Gabriel to deliver the news about the birth of Jesus and Mary's role to her. Mary obeyed the words of God, not angel's commands or the angel himself.

If you really mean to only honor Mary as a person, then why do people go on to make statues of her? I think most of us know how much God hates people building up a statue of an idol.

Also, the Bible says there's only one mediator between God and us: Jesus Christ our Lord and savior.

"For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus" 1 Timothy 2:5.

Plus, the bible warns us not to make an attempt to communicate with the dead.

By anon229273 — On Nov 13, 2011

In Genesis 3:15, God specifically tells the serpent that the day will come when he will put enmity (direct opposition) between the woman and the serpent. Between her offspring and the serpent's offspring.

It is very rare in the Bible (especially Old Testament) that a woman would be given such a prominent role or acknowledgement. Mary is so important to God and to the entire human race to be mentioned in such a way. Eve brought sin into the world by listening to the fallen angel and getting Adam to disobey as well. It is Mary who obeyed the good angel and accepts God's plan. It is through Mary's obedience that she became the mediator for God. She is not to ever be worshiped or glorified because all worship and glory is for God. She is though, to be venerated, honored and thought of as the greatest human (excluding the human nature of her son) to ever live. It is right to put her above all saints but never equal or above God. She is most dearly blessed. It is right to ask her to pray for us now and at the hour of our death.

By reckless — On Nov 09, 2011

You know what? I take back the part about “sinless,” as I am not clear on that yet.

By reckless — On Nov 06, 2011

First of all, "honoring" Virgin Mary is no different from worshipping a religious figure like Buddha. Buddhists claim that they do not view or serve him as a god, as he is not. Yet, the general consensus is that they do treat him as a deity and they so cleverly deny their actions by asserting the terms such as "honor" or "gratitude." The problem is that they fail to realize the fact that the way they treat Buddha is equal to worshipping a god. In their religion, the gods are more of a fodder like beings, when pitted with Buddha.

The same can be said for the Catholics who say that they are making attempts to honor the "holy virgin." Let me quote the words of anon172115, one of the people who has put up a post here, "If it weren't for her, our Saviour would not have been born, and no one would have died for us, to save us." He or she is saying that because Virgin Mary so fought for and kept her innocence, we got an opportunity to have a messiah, who then died for us on the cross. Again, this is a direct violation of every single word anon172115 has said to cover up the truth about his or her Catholic beliefs.

The truth is, Mary happened to be chosen by God to give birth to Jesus by conceiving him through the Holy Spirit. The credit should be given to God and God alone, not a human named Mary. Did Israelites get chosen by God as his people because they were special or sinless? No, absolutely not. They were the smallest in terms of population and God chose them to be his people because of that trait alone. If Mary hadn't been available, God would've given that "honor" to another female. Again, Jesus is the only one who washed away our sins by sacrificing himself on the cross. No human, before the death and resurrection of the Christ, can be made to be sinless. It is even more blatant for someone to make a claim that a human can be holy in nature.

Secondly, you cannot communicate with someone who's already dead. See Ecclesiastes 9:5-6.

God has given us strict warnings to keep us from making attempts to communicate with the dead. Again, a dead person cannot communicate with us and you cannot communicate with someone who has already died. We should only pray to God, and no attempts to have a dead person pray for us or talk to God about our issues.

Lastly, the thought of Mary being someone of holy status is nothing more than a make-believe, half-baked opinion. There's no fact supporting that opinion. Since when did the greatest being in the Universe owe something to a human, a mere ant in his presence? He made it happen, not Mary.

By anon176338 — On May 15, 2011

if Mary and all of your Popes are human, how can they be infallible? they would be just like Jesus, divine.

By anon175569 — On May 13, 2011

Luke 1:46 And Mary said: "My soul magnifies the Lord, And my spirit has rejoiced in God my Savior."

In this passage Mary recognizes her own need of a Savior, and that she knew the true God as her Savior. Nothing here or anywhere else in the Scripture indicates that Mary thought of herself as "immaculate" (free from that taint of original sin). These are words of someone whose only hope for salvation is divine by grace.

By anon172115 — On May 02, 2011

Nowhere in the doctrine of the church, does it mention anything about a limbo, and about non-baptized individuals not being able to enter the kingdom of heaven.

On the other hand, even though it is not dogma of faith, it is believed that those individuals who are not baptized do, in fact, have the opportunity of entering the kingdom of heaven, as long as they live a life which God would want, everyone has a conscious and to some extent knows what's wrong and right, you don't have to be a Catholic to know right from wrong. However if a baptized individual turns away from the Catholic Church, that is a different thing.

The dogma of the Immaculate Conception refers to the fact that the Blessed Virgin Mary was born without the original sin. This makes perfect sense. Since she was going to be the mother of our Lord, she had to be pure and sinless.

Our Blessed Mother is the mother of our Lord, why wouldn't there be devotion for her? When our Lord was on the cross, the Bible clearly illustrates how devotion toward the Blessed Virgin Mary is wanted by our Lord. He tells Mary that the apostle John was her new son, and he tells John that Mary was his new mother. John symbolizes us, mankind, and Mary our new mother. That is why we have so much devotion toward her. She is our loving, passionate, mother, who intercedes for us whenever we ask her for help.

"He was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit, and born of the Virgin Mary."

Mary was a virgin before she gave birth, when she gave birth, and after she gave birth. This is a mystery which we must not question ourselves. The only way to understand this is to have faith and Love in God. We wouldn't be addressing her by the name "Virgin" Mary if she weren't one. And no, Jesus never had any brothers or sisters. It was just a way of calling close friends.

In order to understand and be able to give the love that our Blessed Virgin Mary deserves, I encourage those individuals to pray the Rosary.

Please do not insult our blessed Virgin Mary in the ways she has been in some of these comments. She deserves love and care from each individual. If it weren't for her, our Saviour would not have been born, and no one would have died for us, to save us.

God bless every individual that has posted a comment, and may he help those understand the mystery of the our Blessed Virgin Mary.

By anon170475 — On Apr 26, 2011

Out of all the human beings, God chose Mother Mary to be the mother of Jesus. In fact, God prepared her in that way. He prepared her without the original sin. It is written in the bible that the conversation between Angel Gabriel and Mother Mary was one of the most divine moments in which heaven as well as earth waited anxiously for her answer.

There should be no argument should as to whether she should be considered a virgin or she had a child or she should not be considered God or whatever

When the almighty God himself felt the need to ask her whether she would give birth to his child or no, when after her death she was ascended into heaven and when she was glorified by being crowned in heaven then why can't we give her the respect the angels in heaven and even Jesus gave her?

What are we? Mere sinful mortals. How on earth can we even question her purity or her reverence for God?

God bless everybody who is in her favor and who is not because for her, every single human being is like her own child and she will pray for all that they may be blessed so god bless you!

Mother Mary never ever told any body to respect her. In fact, she always told us to listen and obey her Son.

By anon162360 — On Mar 23, 2011

"Unbaptized children had to remain outside the gates of heaven in Limbo, for eternity for failure to be baptized."

This is not, nor has it ever been, an official doctrine of the Catholic Church.

"While some Catholics believe she retained her virginity, most think Jesus had siblings."

This is an opinion of the author. Please cite sources.

About "women are not meant to be priests": This statement is completely false, according to Catholic Doctrine, regarding why women are not called to be priests in the Catholic Church.

By anon159846 — On Mar 13, 2011

Anything that takes the focus from God is an idol. we celebrate her sainthood by thanking God who through Christ redeemed us from eternal death.

By anon151288 — On Feb 10, 2011

I wonder why people considered Mary (a Jewish woman) as an insect, who could reproduce without fertilization of her egg by the spermatozoa (Parthenogenesis).

By anon146357 — On Jan 26, 2011

Where did the devotion to Mary ever come from?

Jesus never taught his followers to do so. The last direct reference to her in the Bible is in Acts 1, verse 14. Not a single one of the Epistle writers refers to her, let alone teach the believers to pay any devotion to her. When did The Catholic church start to teach that she should be honoured and on whose authority? On at least two occasions Jesus himself could have taught his followers to pay special honor to his mother, but on both occasions he deflected attention from her by his answers.

1 Tim 2:5 says that there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus."

So how come the Catholic church has given that role to Mary?

By anon133877 — On Dec 12, 2010

I love God. I love Mary. I know she is not a God. I do not worship her. Is there a problem asking her to pray for us? Don't you ask others to pray for you? I can only know what is in my heart and this is between God and I. See ya in paradise!

By anon129895 — On Nov 25, 2010

I respect the Virgin Mary and know that she was chosen by God to be Jesus' mother, but how on earth does that make her holy or someone that will pray for us. Jesus is almighty and he is Omnipotent. he can be anywhere, any time.

By anon102338 — On Aug 07, 2010

I'm proud to a catholic. Mary is ever virgin.

By anon80208 — On Apr 26, 2010

I believe entirely in the catholic doctrine. there are some issues in Christianity beyond debates so its better to stay away from them. For instance, no one can depict God! By the way, the virgin Mary will remain queen of heaven and ever virgin.

By anon79976 — On Apr 25, 2010

This is about the Catholic view and beliefs. These may not be in line with Protestant views or even with a non-Catholic reading of scripture. But that's not the point of this article.

Also, as at least one other comment notes, the Immaculate Conception (in Catholic teaching) is not about Mary being a virgin when she conceived Jesus - it is about the conception of Mary in her mother's womb without the stain of original sin.

By anon69537 — On Mar 08, 2010

I or many other traditional Catholic beliefs am curious regarding the immaculate conception, the assumption into heaven, the ability to pray to one who is not a member of the trinity. Just where in the Bible are these teachings?

I have read where previous Popes, such as Pious declared these to be truths. There are no biblical verses regarding limbo, purgatory or many other traditions of the Catholic Church. Also, Mary is not the mother of God, but she is the earthly mother of Christ. God has no beginning or ending, so he could not have a mother. I wish my fellow believers who happen to be in the Catholic Church, will study and read the Bible themselves.

Truth can be revealed to laymen, just as much as clergy. Don't take a chance to be incorrectly led on certain truths. Read them yourselves and seek out your savior yourself and develop a personal relationship with him.

By anon68696 — On Mar 03, 2010

with regards to the "brothers and sisters." Do not take it too literal, jews are known to call each other as brother or sister not by blood but by their affinity. We are all brother and sister of Christ but we have different parents. Mary remains a virgin until her assumption to heaven.

By jabuka — On Dec 17, 2009

Do remember too that Mary, therefore women in general in the Catholic religion are put on a pedestal. They have an important, respected and powerful position.

By anon49564 — On Oct 21, 2009

God gave us the "gift" of sex in marriage to have children. Why is it so important for Mary to be a virgin after the birth of Jesus. She still can be a "blessed mother" and fulfill her marriage vows.

By anon44112 — On Sep 04, 2009

Wow I found this quite misleading. The Immaculate conception is about Mary being born without sin. Although some Protestants believe the above. Secondly Catholic know Jesus did not have siblings. There is only one word in the Hebrew language for friend, sister, cousin, uncle, etc.. etc.. which is Brother. There are other languages that don't have many words as the English language does. Blessings

By anon35126 — On Jul 02, 2009

Matthew 28:20 says "...And know that I am with you always, until the end of the world!" So does that mean that at the end of the world, Jesus will leave us? No. It's a translation from the ancient texts where the same author, Matthew, uses the word "until" to mean "through that point in time" with no indication that the status would change afterward. So Matthew saying that Joseph had no relations with Mary at any time "until" she bore a son was simply his way of ensuring that we all know Joseph was not Jesus' biological father. It's not saying that the status changed afterward. There is no mention in the Bible of Mary giving birth to or raising any other children; certainly that would have impacted Jesus' life as the oldest child and would have been mentioned. Why else did He give her to St. John as his mother (and the mother of the Church) from the cross? Because she had no other children to take care of her. Also, at the time of Christ, there were *no* Aramaic words for close relatives like "cousins" and "uncles," so they all were referred to as "brothers" and "sisters." Acts 1:15 says: "At one point during those days, Peter stood up in the center of the brothers; there must have been a hundred and twenty gathered together. 'Brothers,' he said, 'the saying in Scripture uttered long ago..." Yet another example in Scripture of the word "brothers" so obviously being used without reference to family members.

What foolish man would dare to desecrate the woman whose womb had been the very place of the Incarnation, and where our Lord and Savior lived and grew for 9 months!

If you want to really understand Catholicism, you should read Faith of Our Fathers by James Cardinal Gibbons, or for a longer read, the Catechism of the Catholic Church. Don't believe what non-Catholics tell you... if everything misunderstood about the Church were actually true, no one would be Catholic. Instead, it's the largest single Christian denomination in the world, and growing. Seek the truth.

By gabez — On Jan 16, 2009

Hi there, I was always wondering of this out of proportion adoration for Mary in the Catholic church. I just got into researching it because although I was baptized as a catholic I am now attending protestant charismatic churches. I had the chance to lead a lady from my home country Hungary, to Christ. This happened about 4 years ago and was a total Holy Ghost act. I didn't hear about her since that time because I came back to the States. About 6 months ago I "accidentally" got connected to her, just to find out that the seed sprouted out and growing fast! Praise God! But as most of Hungary she went to the catholic church for education. I was amazed on things being explained to her. Like we can't pray to God straight, because He is to busy! Isn't He God all mighty? Then this idea of Mary and she being immaculate. She has to be honored for being chosen by God to be the mother of Christ and I have no problem with that. But to raise up her to the level (I know you say you don't) of holiness as she is is out of proportion. Then all those miracles connected to her make me kind of wondering. Don't misunderstand, I love the catholic devotion and reverence towards God. This is what is kind of missing in the other churches.

But there are clear erroneous statements in the dogmas. Here we come to Mary again for her to stay a virgin for the rest of her life and on top of this all her to be conceived immaculately! She was a simple gal who was chosen by God. He can do it. Her uniqueness is to be the great roll of being the mother of Jesus. That is the greatest honor a woman can have. I don't believe though that she was any different then all the other saints chosen by God, in regards her human qualities. The Holy Spirit can transform us to all God wants us to be. My question is how is that stated that she stayed a virgin after gave birth to Christ when the scripture clearly says He had brothers(let us say half brothers, not conceived by Holy Spirit)?

Mar 6:3 Is this One not the carpenter, the son of Mary, and brother of James and Joseph and Judas and Simon? And are not His sisters here with us? And they were offended in Him.

By anon6655 — On Jan 05, 2008

Matthew 1:24-25 goes totally against the belief that Joseph never touched his wife, and that Jesus was her only son. The bible clearly states that he knew her not until she gave birth to her first son, not her only son. knew her not until means he didn't have sex with her until afterwards. God Bless!!!

Tricia Christensen
Tricia Christensen
With a Literature degree from Sonoma State University and years of experience as a CulturalWorld.org contributor, Tricia...
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