Mary, Mother of God
The two truths which stand out like mountain peaks in the chain of revelation concerning Our Blessed Lady, and around which cluster all other truths we hold about her, are her divine maternity and her fullness of grace, both of which are affirmed in the Gospels and in the Councils of the Church.
- Reginald Garrigou-Lagrange,OP - The Mother of the Saviour
Our Lady's greatest title is that of the "Mother of God" and, in view of that, she was created "full of grace". "To be the worthy Mother of God, Mary needed to receive fullness of grace", St Thomas (111a, q.27, a.5 corp. et ad2)
The Privileges of the Mother of God
- Mary was conceived without stain of original sin (Immaculate Conception).
- From her conception Mary was free from all motions of concupiscence.
- In consequence of a Special Privilege of Grace from God, Mary was free from every personal sin during her whole life.
- Mary was a Virgin, before during and after the Birth of Jesus Christ.
- Mary conceived by the Holy Spirit without the cooperation of man.
- Mary bore her Son without any violation of her virginal integrity.
- Also after the birth of Jesus, Mary remained a virgin.
- Mary was assumed body and soul into heaven.
from "Fundamentals of Catholic Dogma" by Ludwig Ott
from "The Mother of the Saviour" by Reginald Garrigou-Lagrange,OP - Art IV
"... theologians commonly hold that Mary's initial grace was greater than the final grace of the highest of angels and men ..."
"Since Mary's first grace prepared her to be the worthy Mother of God, it must have been proportionate, at least remotely, to the divine maternity. But the final consummated grace of all the saints together is not proportionate to the divine maternity, since it belongs to an inferior order. Hence the final consummated grace of all the saints united is less than the first grace received by Mary."
"... In short, from the time she could merit and pray, Mary could obtain more without the saints than they could without her. But merit corresponds in degree to charity and sanctifying grace. Hence Mary received from the beginning of her life a degree of grace superior to that which the saints and angels united had attained to before their entry into heaven."
Even more amazingly:
"... Thus Mary, in virtue of the first grace which disposed her for the divine maternity, was worth more in God's eyes that all the apostles, martyrs, confessors, and virgins united, more than all men and all angels created from the beginning."
Our Mother, too
"Mary's role in the sanctification of the Christian has been beautifully described in the writings of St. Louis Mary de Montfort. Here is a synthesis of his teaching:
- all Christians are called to perfection and sanctity;
- to reach perfection it is necessary to practice and perfect the virtues;
- to practice the virtues we need the help of God's grace;
- to obtain God's grace it is necessary to receive it through Mary.
The reasons for the last statement are as follows:
- of all God's creatures, only Mary found grace before God, both for herself and for others;
- Mary gave birth to the Author of grace and is therefore called the Mother of grace;
- in giving Mary his only begotten Son, the eternal Father gave Mary all graces;
- God appointed Mary as dispenser of grace, and by reason of this office she gives grace to whom she wishes and when she wishes;
- as in the natural order a child must have a father and a mother, so in the order of grace the Christian has God as the father and Mary as the mother;
- since Mary formed the Head of the Mystical Body, she should also form the members;
- Mary was and still remains the spouse of the Holy Spirit;
- as in the natural order the child is nourished by its mother, in the supernatural order Mary nourishes and strengthens her children; and
- he who finds Mary, finds Jesus, who is with her always."
Jordan Aumann, OP - Spiritual Theology