Chapter One: Grace and Devotion to Mary
Chapter Two: Mary, Holy Objects and God
Chapter Three: Primary Teachings - Mary the Virgin
Chapter Four: Mary and Jesus
Chapter Five: Deeper Teachings -
Chapter Six: Teachings Not Yet Declared Dogmas -
Jesus and Mary
A Mediator with our Mediator
Chapter Seven: Final Thoughts and Reflections
of the Holy Spirit
of Jesus Made Present
and Church Unity
Consecration to Mary Individual and
Litany of Mary's Faith Journey
© Copyright, J. Roy MacIntyre 2009
God the Father dwells in unapproachable light. No human being has, or can see, the face of God (Jn 1:18) because of our impurity and sin. Nothing flawed could stand in the presence of God. Therefore, the Father, sent Jesus, to become a man and by His act of redemption, He reconciled man with God but also continually mediates between the people He has won and the Father. Jesus also cleanses us from our sin and thereby makes us presentable to the Father. However, Jesus is God and although He is our only mediator of redemption with the Father, do we not, in fact, need a mediator with our Mediator?
John the Baptist, of whom Jesus describes as the greatest man born of women, says of Jesus, "I am not worthy to undo His sandal strap." Yet we are so bold to approach Jesus directly? Does it not make sense to have someone intercede for us with Jesus. It would certainly be more humble for us to have someone go to the Lord on our behalf. In fact, we do this all the time when we ask others to pray for us. Often, our prayers are answered more effectively this way because God desires for us to be humble and to depend on one another in prayer. This not only helps in our need but also builds up the body of Christ, the Church.
The most perfect mediator between Jesus and us is Mary, His mother. She is the one who brought Him forth. She was His living city, "the city of God" (Ps 46), while she carried Him. The saints tell us there is a mystery concerning Mary being the "city of God" that goes beyond the nine months of her being the temple of the Word Incarnate.
Mary was with Jesus all His life on Earth. She interceded at Cana. She was given to us, in the person of St. John, at the foot of the cross. A sword of sorrow pierced her heart for us. She interceded in the upper room on the day of Pentecost with her unwavering faith. Her intimacy with Jesus and her immaculate purity make her the ideal intercessor and mediatrix between Jesus and us.
God humbled himself to come to us through Mary. Ought we not humble ourselves to go to Him through her? The prophet Isaiah tells us; "In the days to come, …the Lord's house (Mary) shall be established… All nations shall stream to it… …and say: ‘Come, let us climb the Lord's mountain, to the house of the God of Jacob, that He may instruct us in His ways, and we may walk in His paths’" (Is 2:2-3). In this we can see that as we approach Mary, the Lord's house, to have her intercede for us, her mediation will also obtain the grace of God's wisdom. Through her, we will be instructed by the Holy Spirit.
So, by Mary, we are at once receiving the grace of wisdom while at the same time having our prayers answered. I would say that there are certain graces of wisdom that will only be given by God to those who humble themselves and approach Him through Mary. What a marvellous mystery of God's grace that He should give His divine wisdom to those who practice devotion to Mary. Besides being the city of God, Mary is also seen as Jacob’s latter, the house of God and the gate of heaven (Gen 28: 10-22) whereby the Second Person of the Blessed Trinity comes from heaven to earth.
However, at this point I had better make a distinction between the teaching of Mary being mediatrix of all graces and the devotion of choosing to go through her to Jesus and to the Father. Mary as Mediatrix or Dispensatrix of All Grace is something we believe and, as defined above, needs to be acknowledged as a truth and as such is a contemplative act, while the devotion to Mary as our mediator is an active practice of our spiritual life. This latter devotion to Mary as our mediator with the one Mediator, Jesus, comes under the title of Mary as Advocate. This word gives a further dimension to Mary as our mediator. She is not just interceding for us she is advocating, actively championing our cause. This process of Mary mediating and advocating for us is completely and correctly explained in St. Louis Marie De Montfort's treatise, "True Devotion to Mary" and is too large a topic to be dealt with in this short work. Nevertheless, for those who would know more about this practice, I recommend St. De Montfort's book which is reported to have transformed the life of the man who was to become Pope John Paul II.
The idea of obtaining spiritual perfection through the mediation and advocacy of Mary is also expounded in the book, "True Devotion to Mary". One insight the author gives compares the actions of Rebecca and Mary. He describes Mary as preparing us to receive a spiritual blessing from God in a similar way to how Rebecca prepared Jacob to receive a blessing from his father, Isaac (Gen 27). For those who have a mind to believe let them believe!
Rebecca disguised Jacob to look like his brother Esau in order to receive a blessing from his father, Isaac. Mary, in a mysterious way through the action of the Holy Spirit, disguises her children to look like her Son, Jesus, so they will be able to receive a blessing from the Heavenly Father. In this spiritual mediation and advocacy by Mary for us, Mary is Advocate.
Before going on to the concluding summary, let me add that without Jesus Christ, the Son of God, Who came in the flesh, shed His blood and died and was raised from death, there is no grace for the human race. Therefore, if all mankind is condemned, whatever apparent goodness we have in our short life is meaningless since our condemnation would be eternal.
All Grace, that is, Jesus Christ, has chosen to come to us through Mary. Therefore, Mary is the Mediatrix of All Grace. We too are mediators of grace in works and witness that help bring Jesus' salvific powers of healing, restoration and redemption to His people. This happens in two ways through intercession to God on behalf of others and in our witnessing directly to others about the Good News. Part of the Good News is our God's humility and faith in us in that He allowed us to share in His redemptive work. In Mary the sharing of His redemptive work is total and complete.
One final point; although Jesus is our only mediator of redemption with the Father we still pray directly to the Father. After all Jesus taught us the prayer, Our Father. Therefore, we can and should pray directly to each Person of the Trinity in order to develop the personal relationship we need with the Persons of God. However, we can even approach the Persons of God in prayer inviting Mary to be at our side as we pray. By this means we will be more pleasing to God as we pray in her company. In fact, our whole life can be lived in this kind of unity with Mary.
St. Louis Marie De Montfort says we give more glory to God by praying with and through Mary than by any other kind of devotion and work. Finally, when we want something from our God whether temporal or spiritual He desires that we avail ourselves of intercessors or mediators and Mary is by far the best one we have.