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DefendingMarianPrayers wrote:

Hi, guys —

Protestants always say that it's wrong to pray to Mary, though I know the word prayer just means
"to ask".

How do I explain words like those in the following prayer:

O Mary, Virgin most powerful and Mother of mercy, Queen of Heaven and Refuge of sinners, we consecrate ourselves to thine immaculate heart. We consecrate to thee our very being and our whole life; all that we have, all that we love, all that we are. To thee we give our bodies etc.

They say this is blasphemy and that she would have to be God to answer to such prayers.

  • How can I explain this?

I'm a bit confused.

DefendingMarianPrayers

  { How do I explain the words and phrases used in this popular Marian prayer? }

Mike replied:

Dear Defending —

Thanks for the question.

With due respect to my Protestant brethren, they will never understand Christianity the way
Our Lord wants them to until they understand that Christianity is a family faith, not an individual faith based on ones own personal moral values, usually the Protestant Minister's.

This is why they misunderstand the Catholic view of Marian teachings as well as the Communion of saints.

  • They cannot call Jesus their brother, without calling Mary their true mother.
  • Without Mary's Yes, in Luke 1:38:
    • we have no Church which He founded
    • we have no Savior
    • we have no Bible
    • we have no personal relationship with Jesus

There is no such thing as the single, unbaptized man on a far away island. This is a red herring brought up by those to try to disprove the family nature of Catholic Christianity.

I would encourage them to read the book of Kings and see the eye-opening parallel between the Kings of the Old Testament and their Queen mother, which they all had, and Jesus and His Queen Mother, Mary.

As my colleague Eric said in another answer:

In Jewish culture, the queen was the mother of the king because kings were often polygamous, it made sense for the queen to be the mother and not some arbitrary wife. You can see this in 1 Kings 2:19:

"Bathsheba [Solomon's mother] therefore went to King Solomon, to speak to him for Adonijah. And the king rose up to meet her and bowed down to her, and sat down on his throne and had a throne set for the king's mother; so she sat at his right hand."

So King Solomon stands and bows to her, and there is none other, in the kingdom that the king would do that for, than the queen. Normally, the protocol is that the supplicant comes in and bows before the king; in this case, the king bows before her, and he brought in a throne for her, and put her at his right hand, the place of honor. In the same manner, we believe that Christ has done that for his mother, Mary.

I would also encourage your Protestant friends to read the writings of the Early Church Fathers.
These were the very first Christians who lived, and often died for the faith, from 100 A.D. to 787 A.D.

All of them saw Jesus, as the New Adam, who came to undo the sin of the first Adam and saw
Mary, as the New Eve, who cooperated with her Divine Son, to undo the sin of the First Eve.

Now to your question.

  • How do I explain the words and phrases used in this popular Marian prayer?

Dr. Scott Hahn states in his book: Hail Holy Queen, which I highly recommend, that their is no such thing as an eternal creator.

The ultimate truth about God cannot be dependent on anything other than God.
We cannot define God in terms of something contingent, as in analogies with creation. God does not depend upon creation for His identity. So even His title of creator is something relative and not absolute. Though He is eternal and He is the creator, He is not the eternal creator. Creation is something that takes place in time, and God transcends time. So, though creation is something God does, it does not define Who He is. The same goes for redemption and sanctification. Though God is redeemer and sanctifier, these titles do not define His eternal identity, but rather certain of His works. The terms "creator," "redeemer," "lawgiver," and "sanctifier" are all dependent upon the world-upon something that needs to be created, redeemed, ruled, and sanctified.

Hail Holy Queen by Scott Hahn, page 18

What Jesus creates and how He creates, tells us something about who Our Creator, the God-Man, Jesus, is.

It was His choice with the Father to redeem mankind of its sins by becoming the Incarnate
God-Man, Jesus Christ. Without your Protestant friend's parents, your Protestant friend wouldn't be living today. This is why we honor our fathers and mothers so much.

  • Although they can't, if your Protestant friends could create their father and mother, don't you think they would create the best ones they could, seeing they were the living consequence of their love?

<Of course they would!>

Well God, did have that choice and he did bless both his mother and foster-father, Joseph, with special privileges in lieu of His coming redemptive death on the Cross. There is only one Savior, Jesus; there is only one God, Jesus, but it was Jesus' choice to redeem mankind through the cooperation of an immaculate mother's free will.

The problem your Protestant friend's have is not with Mary, but with Jesus's choices.

O Mary, Virgin most powerful and Mother of mercy, Queen of Heaven and Refuge of sinners, we consecrate ourselves to thine immaculate heart. We consecrate to thee our very being and our whole life; all that we have, all that we love, all that we are. To thee we give our bodies etc.

I don't expect your Protestant friends now, to believe, what we believe, about the privileges Jesus bestowed on His Mother, but if He did indeed bestowed these privileges, I would ask them to contemplate the following questions.

  • If Jesus would witness to these words as an obedient child of His Mother, why shouldn't all people who call themselves Christians?

Elizabeth didn't say: "Mary you are God and we worship you." No, she said what Jesus and all Catholic Christians affirm: "Blessed are you among women and blessed is the fruit of your womb." Luke 1:42

  • Aren't we called, as Christians, to be like Christ?

Blasphemy is an act or offense of speaking sacrilegiously about God or sacred things; it is profane talk.

  • If we are honoring historical privileges that Jesus chose to bless his mother with, can someone tell me how this is blasphemy?

If you don't wish to accept the historical privileges that Jesus chose to honor his mother with, that's your choice, but please allow Catholic Christians to honor Mary and the privileges her Divine Son blessed her with, as Jesus Himself would.

To say she would have to be God to answer the petitions in this prayer, manifests a misperception of Catholic teaching. Catholic Christians do not believe that Mary created God, the Father or was before God, the Father.

No, we teach she only gave birth to the Second Person of the Trinity, Jesus, the Incarnate
God-Man.


Mike

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