Growing up as a young Methodist I heard very little about the Blessed Virgin Mary. After discovering the Catholic Church I began to hear about her a lot. But I didn’t know what to make of all the things I was hearing, and I made the not uncommon mistake of thinking that I didn’t need to pay much attention to all of that because all that mattered was the truly important stuff. This is an understandable mistake for a newcomer to Catholicism to make, but over the years I’ve heard plenty of Catholics mistake the Marian doctrines of the Church for lower level unnecessary (even optional) doctrines, too. I’ve heard Catholics and non-Catholics alike say, “as long as we agree on the essential things we’re all okay,” but that’s just it: we do not agree on the essentials. We don’t even agree on what the essentials are.
Mary is a key gateway into salvation history. The Bible portrays Mary as the all-holy one who gave the Word flesh, the Mother of God, and the spiritual mother of all who live by faith in her Son…We begin by learning how to read the Old Testament the way Jesus taught the Apostles to read it – as containing “types” that foreshadow and prepare His coming in the New Testament. Ranging widely through the Old Testament, we’ll explore the essential biblical “types” of Mary. We’ll see how she is depicted as the new Eve, the new Ark of the Covenant, and the new Queen Mother of the Kingdom of God. We’ll see how at critical junctures in salvation history, the figure of Mary is foreshadowed and anticipated.Free course at the St. Paul Center for Biblical Theology: Holy Queen: The Mother of God in the Word of God. Emphasis added. (See also links at end of post.)
Lesson Three of Hail, Holy Queen is about Mary as the Ark of the Covenant as shown in St. Luke’s Gospel (including the Visitation narrative, which feast we celebrated in the Church today). There is so much about Mary in St. Luke and St. John provided one learns to read the Bible the way Jesus did. For me the Bible went from being an interesting, sometimes beautiful, often strange and frequently unintelligible book to being a richly textured and amazing set of texts that only truly come alive when the typological key is applied. The whole thing opens up and then WHOA! Mind. Blown.
Below are two excellent videos about Mary in the Church and salvation history.
Thank you for visiting the blog and reading. There is still so much to look at in the treasures of the Church, so I hope you’ll join me again as we continue to explore. Until next time, God bless you and may His peace be always with you.
This has been the Something About Mary Every Day In May series.
Notes and Links
- Free course at the St. Paul Center for Biblical Theology: Holy Queen: The Mother of God in the Word of God
- Hail, Holy Queen: The Mother of God in the Word of God, by Scott Hahn. Hardcover. Paperback. Kindle.
- Video: EWTN On Location, Scott Hahn: Hail, Holy Queen
- Video: Brant Pitre, Mary, the Ark of the New Covenant
- Jesus and the Jewish Roots of Mary: Unveiling the Mother of the Messiah, by Brant Pitre. Paperback. Kindle.
- See also the Visitation narrative in Luke 1:39-56 and in the Rosary Project: the Second Joyful Mystery.
Image in banner: The Last Supper, by Philippe de Champaigne. From Wikimedia Commons. Public domain.
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