Thursday 18th December 2014

Home » Our Catholic Faith » Currently Reading:

Is Mary The Mother Of God . . . Or Only The Mother Of Jesus?

December 6, 2013 Our Catholic Faith No Comments

By RAYMOND DE SOUZA, KM

Part 2

Responding to a common misconception among separated brethren and ill-informed Catholics:
On the day of the Annunciation and the Incarnation, the Archangel St. Gabriel, “who stands in the presence of God” (Luke 1:19), inspired by the Holy Spirit, said to the Blessed Virgin Mary: “Fear not, Mary, for thou hast found grace with God. Behold thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and shalt bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name Jesus. He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Most High. . . . The Holy One who shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God” — Luke 1:30, 35).
Interesting: the title “Holy One” is often used by the Old Testament prophets to refer to Almighty God, i.e.:
“I am the Lord, your Holy One, the creator of Israel, your King” — Isaiah 43:15.
“I am God and not man, the Holy One present among you” — Osee 11:9
“I have not transgressed the commands of the Holy One” — Job 6:10.
It should also be noted that St. Gabriel was not using the title “Son of God” in the sense that every baptized person is a “son of God” by adoption. There is no need of a miraculous virgin birth for a child to be a son of God by adoption. Baptism suffices. But here the angel is referring to a true and authentic sonship, that is, when a father begets offspring who share in his own nature. In this case, since the Father who begot the Child is a divine Person, the Child is also a divine Person. And the Virgin who conceived that divine Person in her womb is the Mother of that divine Person.
The Incarnation of the Word of God in the sacred womb of the Blessed Virgin Mary was the coming true of Isaiah’s prophecy: “Behold a virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and his name shall be called Emmanuel” — Isaiah 7:14.
In his Gospel, St. Matthew interprets the name Emmanuel as meaning “God with us” (Matt. 1:23), a divine Person living in the womb of His human Mother, then being born and living among us. That divine Person assumed that human nature from her. Thus, the Flesh and the Blood of Jesus were provided by Mary, since He had no human father.
The same Isaiah prophesied that the Son of the Virgin would be both human and divine: “For a child is born to us, and a son is given to us [child, son = human] . . . and his name shall be called, Wonderful, Counselor, the Mighty God, the Father of the world to come, the Prince of Peace [Mighty God = divine].”
Notice how Isaiah links together these words: child — son — Mighty God. Notice also how the archangel said to Mary, “Thou shalt call his name Jesus,” and adds three qualifications: “The son of the Most High…The Holy One . . . The Son of God.”
How can a woman be the mother of a divine Person?
A mother is a woman who conceives in her womb the body of her child and later gives birth to that same child. Everyone knows that. Yet she does not create the soul of the child — God creates it. But she bears both the body and the soul of the child in her womb: She bears the whole person.
You would never say to your mother, “You are only the mother of my body, not of my soul, because God created my soul, not you.” That would be most disrespectful to your mother, and, besides, she did not create your body, either — in fact, she created nothing of you! She conceived your body, and God created your soul within your body at conception. She nurtured you and eventually gave birth to you. She is not only the mother of the constitutive natures of that being, that is, a material body and a spiritual soul: She is the mother of your whole person.
This conclusion is most important: A mother is not only the mother of the child’s body and soul, but of the whole child, the person.
Jesus is one of the three divine Persons of the Holy Trinity — He is God. Mary is the Mother of Jesus. Mary is the Mother of one of the three divine Persons of the Holy Trinity. Mary is the Mother of God.
Now, with Jesus, God the Father replaces the natural father in the ordinary course of nature. Jesus’ Mother was overshadowed by the Holy Spirit and the Second Person of the Holy Trinity, God the Son, descended into her womb and assumed a human nature from her.
At the very moment of conception, God the Father created His human soul.
Therefore, His Mother bore His body, His soul, and His divinity, because there is only one Person in Jesus — a divine Person, whom Isaiah called the Mighty God and the Angel Gabriel called the Holy One.
Mary is not, and could not possibly be, the creator of Jesus, since He is eternal, uncreated. She is His Mother because she bore Him in her womb; she nurtured Him there, and finally gave birth to Him. Any woman who does these things for a child is the mother of that child.
Likewise, Mary is the Mother of the God-Man Jesus Christ, but she did not create divinity as such — that would be an even greater absurdity.
So, since the Mighty God, the Son of the Most High, the Holy One is He who shares in the nature of His Father, it does not take much thinking to put two and two together: Since Jesus is God, Mary is the Mother of Jesus, then Mary is the Mother of God. Not the Mother of the Trinity, but the Mother of one of the divine Persons — God the Son, who is just as God as the other two Persons.
One cannot deny the divine Motherhood without denying the doctrine of the Holy Trinity and of the divinity of Jesus Christ — the two essential foundations of the Christian religion. Those baptized Christians who refuse to call Mary “Mother of God” are — one hopes unwittingly — denying the very foundations of her divine Son’s religion.

+    +    +

(Raymond de Souza is director of the Evangelization and Apologetics Office of the Winona Diocese, Minn.; an EWTN program host; regional coordinator for Portuguese-speaking countries for Human Life International [HLI]; president of the Sacred Heart Institute, and a member of the Sovereign, Military, and Hospitaller Order of the Knights of Malta. His web site is www.raymonddesouza.com.)

Share Button

Comment on this Article:

Cardinal Burke . . . “The Church depends on sound Catholic family life, and it depends on sound Catholic families.”

An Interview with Cardinal Burke  On Vatican II Q. Your Eminence, you grew up before the Second Vatican Council. How do you remember those times? A. I grew up in a very beautiful time in the Church, in which we…Continue Reading

Did Pope Francis really say all dogs go to heaven? UPDATED

That nice man, Pope Francis, says you get to see your pets again in Heaven. But Pope Benedict is a mean old Grinch who wants to remove the animals from your Nativity scene Christmas decorations. Oh, really? Please don’t believe…Continue Reading

Catholic Church in Australia links celibacy to child abuse

By Jonathan Pearlman, Sydney, and Nick Squires in Rome 8:04PM GMT 12 Dec 2014 Priests’ vows of celibacy may have led to paedophilia, the Roman Catholic Church in Australia has said, in what is believed to be the first such…Continue Reading

Pope Calls For More ‘Integration’ Of Divorced Catholics, Gays

By Francis X. Rocca Catholic News Service VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Pope Francis said that the Catholic Church must consider various ways to integrate the divorced and civilly remarried in the life of the church — not merely allowing them…Continue Reading

‘I’m not worried’ about resistance, Pope Francis says in new interview

Vatican City, Dec 7, 2014 / 11:04 am (CNA/EWTN News).- In an interview with the Argentine daily “La Nacion” published Sunday, Pope Francis spoke on a variety of topics, giving specific attention to the ongoing reform of the Roman Curia,…Continue Reading

Catholic Church Severs Ties with Agency over Gay Adoption Ruling

The Catholic Church in Northern Ireland is pulling the plug on a long-standing relationship with the Family Care Society, a Catholic adoption agency, after a judge ruled that all adoption services must be willing to place children with same-sex couples…Continue Reading

Reaction to Chicago archbishop’s remarks on pro-abort pols receiving Communion

n a radical departure from the position of Pope Benedict XVI, Archbishop Blase Cupich – said to have been handpicked by Pope Francis for Chicago – has presented giving Holy Communion to pro-abortion politicians as a positive move. Asked Sunday…Continue Reading

Pope Francis dodges reporter’s question on treatment of homosexuality in Synod’s controversial mid-term report

Since the conclusion of the Extraordinary Synod of Bishops on the Family, reporters around the world have been wondering where Pope Francis stands on the controversial language about homosexuality in the mid-term Synod report.  The opportunity to ask the pope…Continue Reading

Archbishop Cupich Says Yes to Communion for Pro-Abortion Politicians

In October of last year veteran Italian journalist Sandro Magister wrote of the new path that many believed the Church was embarking upon. Magister observed: “In Italy, but not only there, it was the cardinal and Jesuit Carlo Maria Martini…Continue Reading

Francis calls for a change mentality in the Church, easier homilies and flexible times

Francis addresses participants of the International Pastoral Congress on the World’s Big Cities: “Go out and facilitate”, don’t be afraid of multicultural contexts or of proclaiming Jesus DOMENICO AGASSO JR ROME Francis was honest from the start: “I don’t want…Continue Reading

Chaput: It Isn’t Possible To Be Pro-life And Simultaneously Forget The Cries Of The Poor

Interview with the Archbishop of Philadelphia who is preparing to receive the Pope for the World Meeting of Families in September 2015: defending the unborn child is a vital part of the social doctrine of the Church. We need to…Continue Reading

Homosexual Activist Organization in New York Receives Catholic Grant

Washington, DC—The Lepanto Institute issued a report exposing the activities of an organization which received a $35,000 grant from the Catholic Campaign for Human Development (CCHD).  According to the report, the Northwest Bronx Community & Clergy Coalition (NWBCCC) launched its…Continue Reading

Untitled 5 Untitled 2

Attention Readers:

  Welcome to our new website. Readers who are familiar with The Wanderer know we have been providing Catholic news and orthodox commentary for over 145 years in our weekly print edition. Now we are introducing the online daily version of our print journal.


  Our daily version offers only some of what we publish weekly in print. To take advantage of everything The Wanderer publishes, we encourage you to subscribe to our flagship weekly print edition, which is mailed every Friday or, if you want to view it in its entirety online, you can subscribe to the E-edition, which is a replica of the print edition.
 
  Our daily edition includes: a selection of material from recent issues of our print edition, news stories updated daily from renowned news sources, access to archives from The Wanderer from the past 10 years, available at a minimum charge (this will be expanded as time goes on). Also: regularly updated features where we go back in time and highlight various columns and news items covered in The Wanderer over the past 145 years. And: a comments section in which your remarks are encouraged, both good and bad, including suggestions.

 
  We encourage you to become a daily visitor to our site. If you appreciate our site, tell your friends. As Catholics we must band together to rediscover our faith and share it with the world if we are to effectively counter a society whose moral culture seems to have no boundaries and a government whose rapidly extending reach threatens to extinguish the rights of people of faith to practice their religion (witness the HHS mandate). Now more than ever, vehicles like The Wanderer are needed for clarification and guidance on the issues of the day.

Catholic, conservative, orthodox, and loyal to the Magisterium have been this journal’s hallmarks for five generations. God willing, our message will continue well into this century and beyond.

Joseph Matt
President, The Wanderer Printing Co.

Untitled 1

'From our friends at The Foundry'


Today . . .

Happy Birthday, Pope Francis!

pope693

(Vatican Radio) There was a festive atmosphere at the weekly General Audience on Wednesday, as Pope Francis celebrated his 78th birthday. As he made his way through the crowds, Pope Francis stopped by a group of seminarians from the Legion of Christ, who offered him a birthday cake, complete with lighted candles. The Holy Father also took the opportunity to…Continue Reading

Pope Francis Recalls His 1st Communion, Says to Remember Catechists

Rome, December 15, 2014 (Zenit.org) Staff Reporter On a visit to a Roman parish Sunday evening, the Pope had lively discussions with various groups from the congregation, including children preparing to receive their First Communion. He told them about his own First Communion 70 years ago. On his arrival at the parish of Saint Joseph all’Aurelio, in the western sector…Continue Reading

Pope Francis: Rigidity Is A sign Of A Weak Heart

pope692

(Vatican Radio) The day’s Gospel reading, which relates how the chief priests asked Jesus by what authority He did His works, was the focus of the Pope’s homily on Monday. It is a demand, the Pope explained, that demonstrates the “hypocritical heart” of those people – people who were not interested in the truth, who sought only their own interests,…Continue Reading

Pope To Children: Prayer Is The Breath Of The Soul

pope685

(Vatican Radio) At the Angelus on Sunday, Pope Francis welcomed the children of Rome for the traditional “Bambinelli Blessing.” On Gaudete Sunday, the Third Sunday of Lent, Roman boys and girls bring the baby Jesus from their Nativity sets to Saint Peter’s Square to be blessed by the Pope. Speaking after the Angelus prayer, the Holy Father thanked the children…Continue Reading

Culture Of Life 101 . . . “Abortifacient Brief: Depo-Provera”

By BRIAN CLOWES (Editor’s Note: Brian Clowes has been director of research and training at Human Life International since 1995. For an electronic copy of chapter 2 of The Facts of Life, “Abortifacients,” e-mail him at bclowes@hli.org.) + + + Depo-Provera is an injectable contraceptive drug that sometimes has an abortifacient effect. It also possesses…Continue Reading

An Advent Reflection . . . The Very Visible Sin Of Gluttony

By REY FLORES Ever since I can remember, I have always had a problem with the fluctuation of my weight. As a child, my nickname was “Gordo,” which means fat in Spanish. I wasn’t bothered when my own family called me that, but it did bother me when the other school kids would make fun…Continue Reading

Gosnell Filmmakers Reopen Crowdfunding Campaign

By LISA BOURNE (LifeSiteNews) — The producers of the forthcoming Kermit Gosnell “House of Horrors” movie are reopening their crowdfunding campaign after Indiegogo changed its rules to allow campaigns without a deadline. Magdalena Segieda, Phelim McAleer, and Ann McElhinney surpassed their previous crowdfunding goal of $2.1 million earlier this year, and the Indiegogo fundraising site…Continue Reading

The CIA And Its Torturers

By ANDREW P. NAPOLITANO When the head of the CIA’s torture unit decided to destroy videotapes of his team’s horrific work, he unwittingly set in motion a series of events that led to the release this past week of the most massive, detailed documentation of unlawful behavior by high-ranking government officials and intentional infliction of…Continue Reading

Fr. Jaki Wrote About… Cardinal Kasper’s Disbelief In The Gospel Accounts Of Christ’s Miracles

By JAMES LIKOUDIS Walter Cardinal Kasper has been regarded in liberal circles as a profound theologian and an expert on ecumenism and Jewish-Catholic relations, as well as an authority on Vatican II. At the center of a recent storm of controversy over his views on the possibility of change concerning the doctrine of the Church…Continue Reading

Advertisement

Our Catholic Faith (Section B of print edition)

Pope’s Message For World Day of Peace . . . “No Longer Slaves, But Brothers”

VATICAN CITY (ZENIT) — Here is the text of Pope Francis’ message for the 48th World Day of Peace, which is celebrated on January 1, 2015. For a text with footnotes, go to www.zenit.org. + + + At the beginning of this New Year, which we welcome as God’s gracious gift to all humanity, I offer heartfelt wishes of peace…Continue Reading

A Leaven In The World . . . True Joy Awards Intense Preparation For Christmas

By FR. KEVIN M. CUSICK With the arrival of these days of late Advent, we have already journeyed through the Solemnity of Our Lady’s Immaculate Conception and Gaudete, or joy, Sunday. We have taken the opportunity to deepen our love and devotion for our heavenly Mother in celebrating the singular prevenient grace of God that equipped her unique preparation for…Continue Reading

Debunking The Sola Scriptura Myth… Summing Up

By RAYMOND DE SOUZA, KM Part 8 According to Sacred Scripture itself, the Bible is not, and was never meant to be, the only source of divine Revelation and sole rule of faith. Jesus neither wrote anything Himself nor commanded anybody to write. On the contrary, He commanded the apostles to preach, viva voce. He commanded the apostles to preach…Continue Reading

The Canon Of Scripture

By DON FIER For several weeks in this series we’ve been examining how God, in His loving Providence, has made Himself known to us. We’ve discussed the twofold means by which His divine Revelation has been transmitted to mankind — Sacred Tradition and Sacred Scripture — and how the two together are inseparable elements of a single Deposit of Faith.…Continue Reading

Catholic Replies

Q. I am enthralled by the story of St. Giuseppe Moscati, the first modern doctor to be declared a saint. Could you tell me more about him? — M.G.L., Arizona. A. Giuseppe Moscati was born in 1880, the seventh of nine children, to aristocratic Italian parents who settled in Naples, where his father was a renowned magistrate and a pious…Continue Reading

Cast A Gauntlet – Sola Scriptura: Part 1

Catholic Heroes . . . Blessed Urban V

By CAROLE BRESLIN The year 1309 marked the beginning of the Avignon papacy, under Pope Clement V, who was French. The Popes of Avignon built a papal palace, increasing it in size over the next 70 years. The first crack in the control of the papacy by the French began when Pope Urban V left Avignon to reside in Rome…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes . . . St. Sabbas

By CAROLE BRESLIN Silence. Quiet. The search for peace, serenity, and calm has led many in today’s world to take up Yoga, Eastern mysticism, or life in remote areas to escape the noise of our modern world. This is not a modern quest. The quest for quiet has been with man for millennia. Although St. Anthony the Great (died 356)…Continue Reading

A Powerful Weapon: 15 Quotes on the Holy Rosary

We live in evil times. I hardly need elaborate the multitude of crises that fill the globe. Sadly, many are being swept away by this flood of evil and are succumbing to an overwhelming anxiety and discouragement. But no matter how tempting it is, we must not shrink back. We must pray and fast with a living faith and a firm confidence—and there is no better way to…Continue Reading

12 Ways to Become a Committed Catholic Man

There is a Catholic “man-crisis.” Large numbers of men who were baptized Catholic have left the Church and the majority of those who remain are “Casual Catholic Men”, men who do not know the Catholic faith and don’t practice it. This large-scale failure of Catholic men to commit themselves to Jesus Christ and His Church has contributed to the accelerating…Continue Reading