Thursday, March 25, 2021

Mary, Another Redeemer?

Roman Catholic Pope Francis weighed in on the debate over the question of whether Mary is a co-redemptrix (link to Vatican site):

Christ is the Mediator, Christ is the bridge that we cross to turn to the Father (see Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2674). He is the only Redeemer: there are no co-redeemers with Christ. He is the only one. He is the Mediator par excellence. He is the Mediator. Each prayer we raise to God is through Christ, with Christ and in Christ and it is fulfilled thanks to his intercession. The Holy Spirit extends Christ’s mediation through every time and every place: there is no other name by which we can be saved: Jesus Christ, the only Mediator between God and humanity (see Acts 4:12).

After several other remarks, Francis continued:

Jesus extended Mary’s maternity to the entire Church when He entrusted her to his beloved disciple shortly before dying on the cross. From that moment on, we have all been gathered under her mantle, as depicted in certain medieval frescoes or paintings. Even the first Latin antiphon – sub tuum praesidium confugimus, sancta Dei Genitrix: the Madonna who ‘covers’, like a Mother, to whom Jesus entrusted us, all of us; but as a Mother, not as a goddess, not as co-redeemer: as Mother. It is true that Christian piety has always given her beautiful titles, as a child gives his or her mamma: how many beautiful things children say about their mamma whom they love so much! How many beautiful things. But we need to be careful: the things the Church, the Saints, say about her, beautiful things, about Mary, subtract nothing from Christ’s sole Redemption. He is the only Redeemer. They are expressions of love like a child for his or her mamma – some are exaggerated. But love, as we know, always makes us exaggerate things, but out of love.

That said, Francis is not a Protestant.  He concluded:  

Prayers said to her are not in vain. The Woman who said “yes”, who promptly welcomed the Angel’s invitation, also responds to our supplications, she hears our voices, even those that remain closed in our hearts that haven’t the strength to be uttered but which God knows better that we ourselves do. She listens as Mother. Just like, and more than, every good mother, Mary defends us from danger, she is concerned about us even when we are concentrated on our own things and lose a sense of the way, and when we put not only our health in danger, but also our salvation. Mary is there, praying for us, praying for those who do not pray. To pray with us. Why? Because she is our Mother.

I will save my critical comments for another time.  I think this represents a setback for the movement to give the title "co-redemptrix" to Mary, but those who are in favor of that will presumably say that (1) this is just a general audience not an exercise of papal infallibility and (2) what they mean by co-redemptrix is somehow consistent with Francis' statements.  

1 comment:

Unknown Soldier said...


Help me not to murmur in my tent
Help me not to foolishly blame God
Help me not to ask why
Help me to walk by faith and not by sight



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Matthew 4 [8] Again, the devil taketh him up into an exceeding high mountain, and sheweth him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them;

Revelation 3 [17] Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:

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