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The Immaculate Conception: Mother of God, Mother of Men

Image: The Immaculate Conception, by Giovanni Battista Tiepolo

by Marianna Bartold

“I will put enmities between thee and the woman, and thy seed and her seed: she shall crush thy head and thou shalt lie in wait for her heel.” (Gen. 3:15)

“Amongst all the works of the Great Creator,” says Raymundus Jordanus (who, in his humility, called himself Idiota—i.e., “Idiot”), “after the wonderful operation whereby the Son of the Eternal Father was united to our nature, Thou, O Blessed Virgin, wast the special work of God, Who made Thee in order that what had become deformed of His first production might be reformed through Thee.”

Every year in December, the Church celebrates two holy days of obligation: the Immaculate Conception and the Nativity of Our Lord. This seems most fitting because, since the foundation of the world, God bound together Our Lady and Her Divine Son. The first mystery of Christ is His Virgin Mother, She who is the Immaculate Conception. This dogma reminds us of St. Paul’s teaching in regard to God’s plan for the Redemption: “All things are done for your sakes” (2 Cor. 4:15), to which St. John Eudes adds, “If He created the world, it was for us, if He became Man, it was for us. If He was born in a stable, it was for our sake…For our sake, He died on the Cross, ascended into Heaven, established Holy Church, confided the sacraments to her care and especially the Most Holy Sacrament of the Altar where He resides for us…In a like manner, if He willed to have a Mother on earth, it was for our sake.”[1] To the words of the saint must be added, “And if He created His Mother as the Immaculate One, it was for our sake.” 

The Divine Revelation that Mary is the Immaculate Conception remains the dogma which is most misinterpreted, misconstrued, and belittled. In treating of the confusion and resulting rejection of this most wondrous truth, an early 20th century Jesuit priest and author, Fr. P.J. Chandlery, S.J., recognized that

“amongst the chief reasons why even ‘learned and devout men,’ outside the Church, do not understand the dogma of the Immaculate Conception is because they misunderstand the doctrine of Original Sin. Not knowing the rule, they cannot realize the exception to the rule; not recognizing the penalty, they cannot see the privilege. In other words, not appreciating what we mean by the stain and guilt of Original Sin, they do not and cannot know what is meant by exemption from it.”[2]

“Great indeed was the injury entailed on Adam and all his posterity by his accursed sin,” wrote St. Alphonsus de Liguori.[3] God had bestowed upon our first parents His sanctifying grace, “a gift to which, by nature, they had no claim. Through the sin of Adam, in which Eve bore her share, this gift was lost for all Adam’s children.”[4] In throwing away the gift that would have been his supernatural inheritance, Adam “also forfeited all the other precious gifts with which he had originally been enriched.”[5]

When through his own fault, Adam lost Original Justice, Original Sin took its place, affecting both body and soulSt. Thomas Aquinas taught that while in the state of justice, “the whole body was held together in subjection to the soul,” but with the fall of Adam, all “the powers of the soul were left, as it were, destitute of their proper order, whereby they are naturally directed to virtue,” and this “destitution is called a wounding of nature.”[6]

Barred from the Tree of Life and wounded by the four chief effects of his sin (weakness, ignorance, malice, and concupiscence), the first father Adam could bequeath to all of his descendants only his fallen human nature, sullied with Original Sin.

The New Adam and the New Eve

“But from this general misfortune,” wrote St. Alphonsus de Liguori, “God was pleased to exempt that Blessed Virgin whom He had destined to be the Mother of the second Adam − Jesus Christ − Who was to repair the evil done by the first.”[7]

A fundamental doctrinal theme of St. Paul is that Our Lord is Adam’s archetype by way of contrast, for Jesus came to undo the work of Adam and to open the gates of Heaven, long closed to the first man’s posterity as a consequence of Original Sin (see 1 Cor. 15:44-49). St. Paul speaks of “Adam, who is a figure of him who was to come…But not as the offense, so also the gift. For if by one man’s offence, death reigned through one; much more they who receive abundance of grace, and of the gift, and of justice, shall reign in life through one, Jesus Christ” (Rom. 5:14, 17).

In his book The Teaching of the Catholic Church, Canon George D. Smith explains, “A man led to our loss of the sanctifying grace of God; a Man gave us back the gift. Death reigned in the race of Adam; through one born of Adam’s race, true Life was restored to men. Death was the punishment decreed for our first father’s sin; when the Redeemer died, death was found to be the one efficacious remedy for our loss.”[8]

The corresponding doctrine that the Blessed Virgin is the archetype of Eve is the teaching of all antiquity, and it was for this reason that St. Ephrem wrote, “Those two innocents, those two simple ones, had been equal the one to the other, but afterward, one became the cause of our death, the other of our life.”[9] Our Lady is “rightly called the second Eve in the same sense that Her Divine Son is rightly called the second Adam…”[10]

As Adam and Eve were created with sanctifying grace, so were the New Adam and Eve. Our Lord Jesus Christ, the second Adam and the Son of Mary, was always sinless in virtue of the hypostatic union of His sacred humanity with the Person of the Word. The hypostatic union is the mystery of the Incarnation of God; it is the reason for the mystery of the Immaculate Conception, the mystery of the perpetual virginity and sacred Motherhood of Mary, and the mystery of the redeeming Cross.

For the sake of the Incarnation and the Passion of Christ, which would offer redemption to the human race, the Lord’s Virgin Mother was conceived without sin, “redeemed in the highest way−the way of prevention−from the shipwreck that involved all the other children of Adam, all our race, in dire catastrophe.”[11]

The Redemption of the Virgin

St. Alphonsus was careful to observe, “There are two means by which a person may be redeemed, as St. Augustine teaches us: ‘the one by raising him up after having fallen, and the other by preventing him from falling,’ and this last means is doubtless the most honorable.”[12]

The sanctified state of the first man and woman prefigure the Incarnation of Christ and the Immaculate Conception. God created Adam from the virginal earth and imbued him with sanctifying grace; He then created the virgin Eve from the virgin Adam. (Here it should be noted that by virgin is meant purity not only in the material sense of the body, but also of intellect, will, and affections.)

When Adam was in the state of Original Justice, the Lord God cast a deep sleep upon him and took one of his ribs to form the first woman, Eve (see Gen. 2:21-22). From the very first moment of her existence, grace was imparted to the woman, granted by God through the stainless Adam.

In a similar fashion, the Virgin Mary (the New Eve) received at the very first moment of Her existence the gift of sanctifying grace, communicated from God through the virginal Jesus (the New Adam). How was this done, when Our Lady preceded Her Divine Son in historical time?

The answer is found in the mystery of the Holy Trinity. God is present to all things that are, were, or shall be. What He is and does, He is and does outside of time. To Him, creatures and events which succeed each other in time are ever present. In the great mystery of the Holy Trinity, which our limited human minds cannot fully fathom, the three Divine Persons applied to Our Lady the foreseen merits of Jesus, the Word made flesh (see John 1:14).

To quote the illustrious words of St. Bernard of Clairvaux:

“One man and one woman have wrought us exceeding harm; nevertheless, thanks to God, through one Man and one Woman all things are restored…and indeed Christ would have sufficed. Surely all sufficiency is of Him, but it would not have been good for us that Man should be alone. Rather, it was fitting that both sexes should take part in our Reparation, for neither sex had been guiltless in our fall.”[13] 

“I have loved, O Lord, the beauty of thy house, and the place where thy glory dwelleth” (Ps. 25:8), wrote King David, for the Holy Ghost inspired him to speak of his future daughter, Mary, the living Temple of God and Ark of the Covenant. For the glory of His Name, for the sake of the Incarnation of Christ, and for our sakes, the maiden Mary was prepared for Her dignity and office as the Virgin Mother of God both spiritually and physically, in Her soul and in Her body. Exempted and preserved from the sin which, as one of Adam’s descendants, She otherwise would have inherited as the naturally generated child of Sts. Joachim and Anne, the Virgin Mary was conceived without sin.

The Immaculate Conception is “the woman,” whose appearance in time commenced the fulfillment of the Lord’s prophecy against the ancient serpent, the devil: “I will put enmities between thee and the woman, and thy seed and her seed: she shall crush thy head and thou shalt lie in wait for her heel” (Gen. 3:15). Created by the Holy Trinity to be the ever-Immaculate Mother of God, Our Lady “was fittingly prepared for the virginal childbearing through which was crushed the serpent’s head.”[14]

“In the Christian religion,” explained Cardinal Billot, “Mary is absolutely inseparable from Christ both before and after the Incarnation: Before the Incarnation, in the hope and expectation of mankind; after the Incarnation, in the worship and love of the Church. For, indeed, in the primeval prophecy [of Gen. 3:15] we were shown not only Christ, but also the Woman whose Child He is…”[15]

“The Immaculate Conception means the restoration of grace once more to the human race,”[16] wrote Fr. H. O’Laverty, author of The Mother of God and Her Glorious Feasts. “The Immaculate Conception…was the long looked-for event in the history of the world, and from this we may really trace all the good things we have received through the sufferings and death of Christ.”[17]

The Unbreakable Bond of the Woman and Her Seed

“A religion that separates Mary from Jesus−the Woman from Her Seed−is neither the religion of the promises and prophecies as we read of in the Old Testament, nor the religion of their fulfillment as we see it in the New,”[18] explains The Teaching of the Catholic Church. 

Christ is Our Divine Savior, and Mary is our holy Mother. Since the first days of the Church, there have always been those who try to separate Our Lord from His Mother. Just as many who forget that the entire human race was not condemned until Adam sinned are blindly inclined to point only to Eve as the reason for mankind’s fall, conversely there are those who claim to admit Christ as Lord and Savior but contemptuously dismiss Our Lady’s office in the Redemption. Just as the Lord God joined together the first Adam and Eve, whose fates were intertwined, so did He join together the new Adam and Eve in the proto-evangelium of Genesis 3:15.

To further the points of “figure-types” previously made, the historical persons of Adam and Eve can always be positively compared or negatively contrasted to their perfect archetypes, the Lord Jesus and the Lady Mary. Gathered from the Fathers of the Church, the following syllabus clarifies God’s binding of the first Adam and Eve and that of “the Woman and her seed”:

  • Adam was created before Eve; the Word in eternity, the Second Person of the Holy Trinity Who said, “Before Abraham came to be made, I am” (John 8:58) preceded His human but sinless Mother.
  • Adam was formed by God from the virginal earth; Jesus was conceived of the Holy Ghost and born of the Virgin Mary.
  • Sanctifying grace was bestowed to Eve through Adam; Mary was conceived in grace through the foreseen merits of the new Adam.
  • Eve sinned before Adam; Mary was born before Christ.
  • Adam and Eve were created in Original Justice but fell from grace; Jesus and Mary were always “full of grace” (see John 1:14; Luke 1:28).
  • Adam and Eve were intended to be the lord and lady over all the earth; Our Lord Jesus Christ and Our Lady Mary possess dominion over all creation.
  • Mary is the cause of our salvation, even as Eve was the cause of our ruin.
  • “As Eve was seduced by an angel’s word to shun God after having transgressed His Word, so Mary, also by an Angel’s word, had the good tidings given her so that, after obeying His Word, she might bear God within her.” (St. Irenaeus of Lyons)
  • Adam, who sinned early in his life, sentenced the entire human race to death; Christ, Who died in the flower of His youth, redeemed us for eternal life.
  • Both the Lady Eve and the Lady Mary became “the mother of all the living” (Gen. 3:20) – Eve in the natural order, Mary in the order of grace – for the Mother of God is also the Mother of men.

On the last point above, the Rev. F. Thaddeus, the priest-author of the wondrous late 19th century book entitled Mary Foreshadowed, explains:

“When Adam had…drawn upon his whole posterity the sentence of death: ‘Dust thou art, and unto dust thou shalt return,’ then, writes Moses, ‘Adam called the name of his wife Eve, because she was the mother of all the living’ (Genesis 3:20). Who is not filled with astonishment at these words? Through Eve death comes into the world, and yet she, who is the cause of death, receives the name which means ‘Life’ and she is called ‘Mother of the living’!

St. Epiphanius explains this apparent contradiction in the following manner. ‘Adam,’ he says, ‘spoke at that moment in mysterious and prophetic terms. He mentioned indeed the name of Eve, but Mary was hereby foreshadowed. For as Eve is, in reality, the mother of the dead, so Mary is truly the mother of the living.’

Consider the Blessed Virgin in this light, and you will see that she has a much greater claim to the title of ‘Mother of the human race’ than our first mother Eve. For what is life, properly speaking? It is to be animated with a Divine principle. In Ipso vita erat—‘In Him (in Jesus) was life’ (John 1:4). And Jesus says: ‘I am the way, and the truth, and the life’ (John 14:6). The Word Incarnate is for us the only source of this true life, the life of grace, which is so far superior to our natural life, that without it life is eternal death. The Son of God has taken our nature in order to make us partakers of His Divine life; and to bring about this ineffable union, He has used Mary as an instrument; for He was ‘conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the Virgin Mary.’

The Blessed Virgin has brought us forth to a new life, the life of grace, and therefore we properly call her ‘our Mother’ and ‘the Mother of the living.’ The Church also calls her ‘our Life’ in the Salve Regina: ‘Hail, our Life, our Sweetness, and our Hope!’

And as in olden times the daughter of Pharaoh adopted Moses on the banks of the Nile, so Mary adopted all the Faithful in a special manner for her children at the foot of the Cross, when Jesus entrusted them to her care, saying: ‘Woman, behold thy son’ (John 19:26). After that, He saith to the disciple: ‘Behold thy mother.’ And from that hour the disciple took her to his own (John 19:27). The Gospel does not say, ‘John took her’ but ‘the disciple took her,’ a name common to all the followers of our Divine Redeemer.

St. Bernardine of Siena, explaining these words, says: ‘By John we understand all the elect, of which the Blessed Virgin became the Mother.” Devotion to Mary, the Mother of the living, is looked upon as a sign of predestination, and election to eternal life. St. Bonaventure completes these remarks, saying that, as Mary is the Mother of the elect here, so she is the Mother of all the saints in heaven, and the fullness of their joy after God.’”

The Glories of Mary

In the third century, St. Proclus wrote of the Immaculate Conception, “Mary is the glory of virgins, the joy of mothers, the support of the faithful, the diadem of the Church, the express model of the true faith, the seat of piety, the robe of virtue, the dwelling-place of the Holy Trinity.”[20]

The Holy Scriptures relate that when the Virgin Mary, already full of grace, gave the angelic messenger Her fiat – “Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it done to me according to thy word” (Luke 1:38) – She was overshadowed by the Holy Ghost. The Lord of all was made Man, and “the woman” became Theotokos [21] (literally “God-bearer” in Greek, or in a variable translation, “God’s Mother”). At the moment Our Lady became the Mother of God, She also became the spiritual Mother of all mankind. From that same instant, the new Adam and the new Eve together began the Redemption of mankind.

Those who truly adore Christ also honor the Perpetual Virgin who brought Him forth. In a similar manner, those who possess devotion “to Jesus through Mary” make their own the witness of St. Alphonsus: “The more we honor Mary, the more we shall honor God,” for when Our Lord came to free us all, He did not disdain the humility of the Immaculate Virgin’s womb.

“And she brought forth her first-born Son, and wrapped Him up in swaddling clothes, and laid Him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn” (Luke 2:7). Born in poverty and adored only by the humble Virgin, St. Joseph, and poor shepherds, the Christ Child would later be sought by wise men from the east, following a star.

“And entering the house, they found the Child with Mary, His Mother, and falling down they adored Him” (Matt. 2:11). So do all the faithful throughout history forever find Christ, always with Mary, His Mother and ours.


Marianna Bartold is the author of Fatima: The Signs and Secrets and Guadalupe: Secrets of the Image. The founding publisher of The Catholic Family’s Magnificat and editor of Sursum Corda (now Latin Mass) magazines, she also digitally publishes traditional Catholic classics on Kindle. She blogs at Keeping It Catholic—The Blog!

This essay was originally published at Catholic Family News. First reprinted with permission at 1P5 on December 8, 2017.


[1] Eudes, St. John. The Admirable Heart of Mary. [Buffalo, NY: Immaculate Heart Publications, under license from Loreto Publications, Fitzwilliam, NH]: p. 80.

[2] Chandlery, S.J., P.J. Mary’s Praise on Every Tongue. [London: Manresa Press, 1919]: p. 10.

[3] De Liguori, St. Alphonsus. The Glories of Mary. [Brooklyn, NY: The Redemptorist Fathers, 1931]: p. 287.

[4] Smith, D.D., Ph.D., Canon George D. The Teaching of the Catholic Church: A Summary of Catholic Doctrine, Vol. I. [New York: The MacMillan Co., 1959]: p. 526.

[5] de Liguori, loc. cit.

[6] Aquinas, St. Thomas. The Summa Theologiae. Second and Revised Edition, 1920.  First Part of the Second Part, Question 85.

[7] de Liguori, loc. cit.

[8] Smith, op. cit., p. 523.

[9] St. Ephrem, Op. Syr., tom. ii, p. 325. Cited by Canon Smith, op. cit., p. 531.

[10] Smith, op. cit., p. 524.

[11] Ibid., p. 528. [Emphasis added].

[12] de Liguori, op. cit., p. 303.

[13] St. Bernard, Sermo de Duodecim praerogativis B.V.M., I, 2. Cited by Smith, op. cit., p. 530.

[14] Smith, op. cit., p. 526.

[15] De Verbo Incarnato, p. 401 (Rome, 1912). Cited by Smith, op. cit., p. 530.

[16] O’Laverty, B.A., Fr. H. The Mother of God and Her Glorious Feasts. [Rockford, IL: TAN Books and Publishers, 1987; republished from the 1908-1915 edition]: p. 4.

[17] Ibid.

[18] Smith, loc. cit.

[19] Haer. V.19.

[20] St. Proclus, Patriarch of Constantinople (d. 446), Orat. 6. Cited by P.J. Chandlery, S.J., op. cit., Section IX.

[21] The dogma that Mary is Theotokos, because Her Son Jesus is one Divine Person with two natures (divine and human; the hypostatic union), was formally defined at the Ecumenical Council of Ephesus in 431 A.D.

77 thoughts on “The Immaculate Conception: Mother of God, Mother of Men”

  1. Interesting article. The belief in the Immaculate Conception was and is confusing to me. I make the following points and ask the following questions genuinely.
    I don`t understand what the “big deal” is; in the sense that God could create an infinite number of Mary and mothers of God. If Mary was created free from sin, where does her merit come from?
    Was Mary free to say no? If she did, what would that mean? Would God simply create another Mary and ask again?
    As the CCC says that Mary was created free from sin based on the future merit of her son`s passion and death, then God knew she would say yes, was she really free to say yes?
    What if she said no; how would her immaculate conception be justified, as Christ could now not be born?
    Could anyone answer these questions, thanks!

    • Your first question is answered by your own quote from the CCC. Mary’s Immaculate Comception is merited by her Son’s Passion and Death.
      At the root of your questions is a misunderstanding of what freedom is. Freedom is not the ability to choose good or evil, but rather the unrestricted ability to choose the good.
      So when you ask “was Mary free to say no?” this means “Was Mary somehow restricted in her ability to choose the good, i.e. to say yes?” The answer is no. Since she was unrestricted, there was nothing to stop her free will from saying yes to God.
      You also have to consider God’s Providence. God is not some spotty teenager at a disco asking a girl to dance and if she says no he moves on to the next one. No, God knew from all eternity that Mary would say yes, in fact He arranged it so, though without impacting her free will.
      I hope this helps.

      • Thanks for the reply…… What I meant by Mary`s merit was; Why honour her on this feast day? Where does her merit come from?

        If God created my mother free from original sin, she could have been the mother of God! If I was created free from original sin, wouldn`t I be great.

        Also I disagree with your concept of freedom. God gave us the freedom to do choose between good and evil. It says in Sirach/Ecclesiasticus 15:13-20;
        “The Lord hates all that is foul, and no one who fears
        him will love it either. He himself made human beings
        in the beginning, and then left them free to make their own decisions. If you
        choose, you will keep the commandments and so be faithful to
        his will. He has set fire and water before you; put out your hand to whichever
        you prefer. A human being has life and death before him; whichever he prefers will be given him. For vast is the wisdom
        of the Lord; he is almighty and all-seeing. His eyes are on those who fear him,
        he notes every human action. He never commanded anyone to be godless, he has
        given no one permission to sin.”
        God gave Satan the freedom to say no. We know what he chose.

        • But God did not create anyone free from original sin, except the Holy Virgin. Your hypothetical case does not enter into it.
          My definition of freedom is rather the definition of perfect freedom in that only when it is perfect is it unrestrained. While we are on earth we are required to choose the good in accordance wuth our will. Yet choosing evil is not freedom.

          The Catechism says this:

          Freedom is the power, rooted in reason and will, to act or not to act, to do this or that, and so to perform deliberate actions on one’s own responsibility. By free wil one shapes one’s own life. Human freedom is a force for growth and maturity in truth and goodness; it attains its perfection when directed toward God, our beatitude.

          As long as freedom has not bound itself definitively to its ultimate good which is God, there is the possibility of choosing between good and evil , and thus of growing in perfection or of failing and sinning. This freedom characterizes properly human acts. It is the basis of praise or blame, merit or reproach.

          The more one does what is good, the freer one becomes. There is not true freedom except in the service of what is good and just. The choice to disobey and do evil is an abuse of freedom and leads to “the slavery of sin.” (CCC 1731-1733)
          Note that in heaven the Saints are perfectly free yet their will is “frozen” in the direction of the good.
          Meanwhile the damned are in complete bondage because their will is directed irrevocably away from the ultimate good , i.e. God.

          • See that is my point. The saints were born with a fallen nature and attained a high level of virtue through freely choosing.

            Were as Mary was born sinless, so were is the merit?

            I found it odd that the author of the article quoted St Bernard of Clairvaux when he was one that had great concerns about the idea of the Immaculate Conception. Here is what he wrote about it. Also St Thomas Aquinas had reservations.

            ““I am frightened now, seeing that certain of you have desired to change the condition of important matters, introducing a new festival unknown to the Church, unapproved by reason, unjustified by ancient tradition. Are we really more learned and more pious than our fathers? You will say, ‘One must glorify the Mother of God as much as Possible.’ This is true; but the glorification given to the Queen of Heaven demands discernment. This Royal Virgin does not have need of false glorifications, possessing as She does true crowns of glory and signs of dignity.

            Glorify the purity of Her flesh and the sanctity of Her life. Marvel at the abundance of the gifts of this Virgin; venerate Her Divine Son; exalt Her Who conceived without knowing concupiscence and gave birth without knowing pain. But what does one yet need to add to these dignities? People say that one must revere the conception which preceded the glorious birth-giving; for if the conception had not preceded, the birth-giving also would not have been glorious. But what would one say if anyone for the same reason should demand the same kind of veneration of the father and mother of Holy Mary? One might equally demand the same for Her grandparents and great-grandparents, to infinity.

            Moreover, how can there not be sin in the place where there was concupiscence? All the more, let one not say that the Holy Virgin was conceived of the Holy Spirit and not of man. I say decisively that the Holy Spirit descended upon Her, but not that He came with Her…I say that the Virgin Mary could not be sanctified before Her conception, inasmuch as She did not exist. if, all the more, She could not be sanctified in the moment of Her conception by reason of the sin which is inseparable from conception, then it remains to believe that She was sanctified after She was conceived in the womb of Her mother.

            This sanctification, if it annihilates sin, makes holy Her birth, but not Her conception. No one is given the right to be conceived in sanctity; only the Lord Christ was conceived of the Holy Spirit, and He alone is holy from His very conception. Excluding Him, it is to all the descendants of Adam that must be referred that which one of them says of himself, both out of a feeling of humility and in acknowledgement of the truth: Behold I was conceived in iniquities (Ps. 50:7). How can one demand that this conception be holy, when it was not the work of the Holy Spirit, not to mention that it came from concupiscence? The Holy Virgin, of course, rejects that glory which, evidently, glorifies sin. She cannot in any way justify a novelty invented in spite of the teaching of the Church, a novelty which is the mother of imprudence, the sister of unbelief, and the daughter of lightmindedness”

          • The Saints attained a high level of virtue through God’s grace. Mary was conceived immaculate by God’s special privilege but still by grace. In fact the Archangel Gabriel addresses her as “full of grace”.
            There was a long history of discussion on the subject of the Immacualte Conception. St. Bernard’s view turns out to have been incorrect. The difficulties with the teaching were subsequently resolved by Duns Scotus in the 14th century.

          • Oh I know how it turned out. I just can`t understand the logic. But thanks for the input. God bless you!

          • God is infinite, has an infinite “mind” and we of finite mind are severely limited in our intellect as a result
            of the FALL. Suffice to say even without our fall we would remain finite in our “understanding” of HIS Power
            and Majesty. Faith is our station but we do have and are given sufficient reason to accept with Faith what the
            Church teaches us as revealed truths.

            Human logic can never be sated by human intellectual exploration of Divine Mysteries.

          • I agree with that concept Barry when attempting to understand the nature of God. As I said to Ivan; How can a creature understand the Creator?

            However, I do believe that I should be able to reason and logically understand something I am being told to believe.

          • Hi Joe, when you concede (as we all do) that we can not understand the nature of God you apply Faith to HIS Word.
            You (we) agree that The Creator created the seen AND unseen World.

            Because of the FALL we are in darkness now, and for us to expect to be able to reason and logically understand
            something we are being “told to believe” (as you put it) would contradict an “admittance of ignorance” with regard to
            the nature of God.

            To put it in the simplest terms, God’s ways are not our ways. God can and does whatever HE sees fit to do and is no
            respecter of human limitations on understanding. It is an Act of Faith to believe in this Dogma and a duty of our station.
            I personally have no problem with this Article of our Faith but can understand your confusion.

            Doubt is not in essence sinful and we all entertain it as weak humanity. However we MUST be very careful in how we
            manage those moments, those pauses, because if we remain “stuck” on any particular issue the preternatural realm
            will look to take advantage and attempt to open us up to wider doubts about Our Faith and THEN we may find ourselves
            in deep water. Study and Pray regarding this issue (as I am sure you have done) and continue to do so…

          • Thank you Barry! Well putted in very few sentences.
            And very important thing is to not let ourselves ‘stuck’ for too long on any doubt. Which can lead us in temptation to weak and eventually to loose our Faith.

          • Yes Ivan that is really true, AND of course the gift of Faith IS exactly that, a gift.

            Indeed if we can recognize the certain humiliation of our natural state as fallen creatures we CAN then recognize the dangers of what one might call contemplative doubt.

          • Thanks Barry. I believe I may be misunderstood. I simply feel that the reservations that St Bernard of Clairvaux and St Aquinas have not been addressed or answered. That is it in a nutshell. If anybody has anything that deals with it I am ready and eager to listen and learn.

          • Hi Joe,
            To be blunt I am not really concerned nor am I familiar with the “reservations” of these great Saints as the Church
            Herself has AUTHORITY here and expressed it’s position under His Holiness venerable Pope Pius IX in his
            encyclical: Ineffabilis Deus on December 8th 1854.

            If we were to judge the reasoning of any Dogma from the highest point of Church Authority based on the
            reservations of any Saint or our own reasoning then what kind of Church have we got?
            We would all become protestants overnight.

          • Well Barry that may be good enough for you, however it is not for me. I never accept anything with blind faith. I believe that faith involves taking a leap into the unknown, a step beyond reason. However, reason is needed to get you to that point. I will keep seeking the truth and when I find it, I will do my best to live it. God bless you!

          • Then I would suggest TOTAL HUMILITY in all matters until your dying breath and remember Our Lord’s word’s:

            Douay-Rheims Bible
            Jesus saith to him: I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No man cometh to the Father, but by me.

            God bless Joe, and take care of yourself and those entrusted to you.

          • Hi Joe, Catholicism is not rocket science! I wrote an answer for you a few days ago. Consider, please? Just tryin’ ta help! God bless all. Sweet Caroline

          • Remember the moral of the Purgatorio by Dante Aligheri. Virgil, who represents Reason, leads Dante through Inferno and Purgatorio. At the very top of Purgatory, Beatrice (who represents Faith) comes down from Paradiso to meet Dante and guide him through Paradise. Virgil must leave Dante and go back to Limbo. He cannot enter into Paradise.

            Reason has a limit, and that limit is the Rubicon of the soul. If Reason goes beyond that, there’s “civil war” in the soul until it is put back in its place. (Apologies to Pompey and Caesar.)

          • See that`s where the confusion lies. I am not saying that reason is paramount. I agree that reason takes one so far and then a leap of faith is necessary. However, I am simply saying that faith never contradicts reason. In the case of the Immaculate Conception they way that it is being explained seems that reason is being contradicted. As I said twice now but nobody has responded to, I simply feel that the reservations that St Bernard of Clairvaux and St Aquinas have about the Immaculate Conception have not been addressed or answered. That is it in a nutshell. If anybody has anything that deals with it I am ready and eager to listen and learn.

          • You say: “However, I am simply saying that faith never contradicts reason.”
            I say, that you’re wrong with this. Bad (incorrect) faith contradicts good (correct) reasoning.
            I say brotherly to you, you should do some work on your Faith.
            Praying Holy Rosary makes wonders.

          • Of course bad faith contradicts good reasoning and vice versa. That has little to do what we`re talking about. Do you think St Bernard or St Thomas Aquinas didn`t work on their faith? Because they had serious reservations about the way the concept of the Immaculate Conception was being preached. I share those and am looking for the answer. All I have received from people here is; Your faith is weak, stop doubting etc. I was hoping for better. Ah well!

          • It seems you expect of one or another (or two) saints to have knowledge about the whole Magisterium, and all God’s mysteries. But there is and never were such a saint. In fact, some of them have about certain matters, and yes even important matters diametrical different positions or views. They were and are also humans only. That’s why we have the Church in her completeness. Did you knew that st Jeronim and st. Augustin were very close, but in one period of, I think 10 years long, they were both very upset about their different meanings about something, and they did not speak to each other for such long time. After all they were again close.
            But I give you with this just some material to think about expectations of any (every) saint concerning ALL the things.

          • Exactly Ivan, that is my point. I don`t expect everyone to know everything. However, I expect the Church to know exactly what they are preaching and why, when they are demanding that adherents accept a tenet of faith. As I said to Patricia;

            I think we`ve got our lines crossed here. If everybody goes back to my first comment, I never said that I don’t believe in the Immaculate Conception. I said I had serious reservations and questions about the reasoning behind it. To me, of course God could create a woman without sin. That is not the issue. The issue is the claim that her IC was achieved through the future merits of Christ`s death and resurrection, which would mean that Mary could not have said no. What if Mary said no? How would her IC be justified? Because she is not giving birth to Christ who by his death and resurrection that would justify her IC. See how confusing this teaching seems! For me God could create an infinite amount of Marys immaculately conceived. That is not the issue. The issue is the seeming convoluted manner in which the IC is preached.

          • point taken that your questioning went about reasoning behind the dogma and not dogma itself. But I’ve remember that, I did not forget it. … The thing is, that discussion at the certain point (moment) about such things can take a different path… than the matter in question. That is one “reason” ( 😉 ) more to avoid this kind of conversions.
            I suggest to you, go and do some research on your own. With internet as a tool, in this days, I believe you’ll come far further than where you are know.

          • Hi Joe, you are wondering where Mary’s merit comes from, as she was conceived without Original Sin? She was “full of grace”, as the Angel Gabriel said, when he asked her if she would be the Mother of God. That’s because she was born that way in accordance with God’s plan for the redemption of the human race. However, she would have been FREE to say no. She didn’t. She had free will. She thought for a moment and asked how that could be since she did not “know” man. The Angel told her that the Holy Ghost “would overshadow” her. She instantly said “yes”. So we have joy in celebrating the Immaculate Conception of Mary, free from Original sin from the first moment of her natural conception by Joachim and Anna. “Nature’s solitary boast” Shakespeare

          • We are asked to believe, in faith, the mysteries revealed by God. A “mystery” (here, not in the Eastern sense of “sacrament”) is a circumstance that we cannot completely understand by human reason and logic. In addition to the Immaculate Conception of the Mary, there are others: the conception of Jesus by the power of the Holy Spirit, the Blessed Trinity, the hypostatic union of Jesus’s human and divine natures…

          • Hi Patricia. To believe in a God takes reason. To believe in a religion takes faith and reason. I as a creature know that I will never fully understand the mysteries of God. That is reasonable. How can a creature understand the Creator?. However, to believe in a religious dogma that demands my ascent, must be based in reason. As I said numerous times so far (and still nobody will address it); I simply feel that the reservations that St Bernard of Clairvaux and St Aquinas have about the Immaculate Conception have not been addressed or answered. That is it in a nutshell.

          • As others have suggested, reading/studying the Church Fathers and great theologians *before and beyond* the writings of St. Bernard of Clairveaux and St. Thomas Aquinas may help you work this through. Certainly, in order for Pius IX to declare the Immaculate Conception “dogma” in 1854, scholars must have addressed the issues raised by the two saints.

            Plus, we have the word of the Mother of God herself to St. Catherine Laboure in 1830 (the inscription Our Lady dictated for the Miraculous Medal: “O Mary, conceived without sin…”) and to St. Bernadette in 1858 (“I am the Immaculate Conception.”) That clinches it in my mind!

          • I think we`ve got our lines crossed here. If everybody goes back to my first comment, I never said that I don’t believe in the Immaculate Conception. I said I had serious reservations and questions about the reasoning behind it. To me, of course God could create a woman without sin. That is not the issue. The issue is the claim that her IC was achieved through the future merits of Christ`s death and resurrection, which would mean that Mary could not have said no. What if Mary said no? How would her IC be justified? Because she is not giving birth to Christ who by his death and resurrection that would justify her IC. See how confusing this teaching seems! For me God could create an infinite amount of Marys immaculately conceived. That is not the issue. The issue is the seeming convoluted manner in which the IC is preached.

          • >>The issue is the claim that her IC was achieved through the future merits of Christ`s death and resurrection<<

            Just a note that probably has nothing (or everything! I'm not a theologian!) with your concerns, Joe: The merits of the Cross and Resurrection apply outside of "time" ("chronos"). God's time is *eternity* — "kairos" — and the actions of the Second Person of the Blessed Trinity, in that sense, exist *at all times* for all men. To say that Jesus' actions generated "future" merit, relative to Mary's conception in her mother's womb, is to misunderstand this concept of "God's time." The "merits" by which Mary was conceived free of Original Sin *pre-existed* that event.

            The mystery I contemplate may be relevant to your concern: How did Mary (and how do we) have "free will" if God, who is omniscient and omnipresent, *already knows* what action will be taken by any human being?

          • Correct. “Time” is the issue in these matters.

            “The issue is the claim that her IC was achieved through the future merits of Christ`s death and resurrection, which would mean that Mary could not have said no.”

            We mere mortals have to use the term “future merits” because we are progressing through time.

            God is outside of time; therefore, to Him, the merits are not “future.”

            God sees the fiat of the Blessed Virgin at the same time He sees Christ’s death and resurrection, at the same time He sees the Immaculate Conception.

            Thus, the Immaculate Conception is the result of Mary’s “future” yes, just as it is the result of Christ’s “future” merits. She was free to say no, but God already knew that She would say yes, hence the privilege of the Immaculate Conception was given, and “later” Christ’s passion occurs.

            But these things are outside of time for God, so when He acts, He acts according to something that is already known and seen by Him.

            To God, all those events (Immaculate Conception, Our Lady’s fiat, Christ’s atonement) are present as if happening simultaneously.

          • Imagine a thousand possible lives for everyone, each depending on choices they make at different moments.
            Imagine a traveler with a thousand possible journeys and combinations of journeys in front of him.
            All those journeys exist. The places he COULD visit or pass through.

            They all exist NOW. And he makes his choices NOW. Seen from one point of view he is traveling from one place to
            another, hesitating at a cross-roads, entering a cul-de-sac, turning back, going towards danger, turning away from it, perhaps without even knowing it was there, at last reaching a goal – the one he set himself, or another, or else
            failing to reach that goal, and becoming lost, and dying of despair. This is how WE see him.

            But from God’s point of view he is already THERE.
            And in all the places he has chosen to be. His journey takes no time at all, his choices take no time at all, because
            there is no TIME. And yet he makes the choices, and could have made others.

          • Thank you, now we are discussing the issue I was trying to raise. This is exactly my point regarding God existing outside of time. For God to immaculately conceive Mary, he did not need the future merits of Christ death and resurrection, as God sees everything at once, creation, the fall, redemption, eternity. That is my point. I don`t see why the Church teaches the IC was facilitated by the future merits of Christ`s redemptive act for the exact reason that you stated, namely; God`s time is eternity. God is.

          • Joe, if I could quote you in a previous reply to Patricia:

            ” If everybody goes back to my first comment, I never said that I don’t believe in the Immaculate Conception. I said I had serious reservations and questions about the reasoning behind it.”

            To admit to serious reservations and doubt about the reasoning behind something that you BELIEVE IN provokes curiosity as to what explanation you believe is more “accurate” to describe your acceptance?

          • That`s it Barry!…. I have no problem with the idea that God is his omnipotence, omniscience and omnipresence could create an infinite amount of Marys without any need for Christ`s death and resurrection. I just feel that the manner in which the Church teaches this dogma of the IC is unnecessarily complicated and seems to limit God`s power by saying that Mary`s IC was dependent on Christ future (in worldly terms) death and resurrection.

          • When I say “historical narrative” I am simply referring to Man’s concept of time; past, present, and future.

            I don’t see it your way Joe, it is God’s will that Man co-operates in his redemption. Man opted out of Friendship
            with his Creator by his own free will and subsequently must co-operate with The God of Perfection by and
            through a process of purification offered by sending HIS Son to break us out of slavery and bondage to Satan.

            The Passion and death of Our Lord Jesus Christ was the key to unlock this process of redemption.
            In HIS human nature The Christ obeyed HIS Father’s Will as did the fully human Woman HE chose to favor
            as Mother of the Word Incarnate.

            You say:

            “I have no problem with the idea that God is his omnipotence, omniscience and omnipresence could create an infinite amount of Marys without any need for Christ`s death and resurrection.”

            I have a massive “problem” with this statement! God’s plan is perfect and exists NOW for as you admit HE is outside
            space and time. But be of NO doubt, without the consummation of Christ’s life crucified at Calvary there could be no
            unlocking of the doors to Paradise and no sinless Woman to bridge these realms.

          • Hi Joe. Many people have difficulties with these things and it’s fine to have difficulties. But we must not have doubts. To doubt is a serious matter, while difficulties can be discussed and clarified. It’s important to know the difference.

            I share your difficulties, to some extent, but I also believe in mystery. Is it important for our salvation that we understand clearly every mystery? No. We can love Our Lady, and understand in some way how holy she was created, and say our prayers to her asking her to intercede with her Son etc. and still be puzzled.

            Imagine you are a peasant on the farm in France, or England in the year 1200. Would you necessarily understand all that Saints, Doctors, and Fathers of the Church believed? No. Could you love Our Lady because she was Jesus’ Mother? Yes.

            If you really want to know all there is about the Immaculate Conception just keep researching and reading – go back as far as you can into the philosophy and theology of those Doctors and Saints that came before. And don’t worry about it. Our Lady will give you the grace you need to love her and her Son. What else is there?

          • The truth is, that many ordinary people with simple, lower, or even no education are often great devotees of our Lord and usually of God’s Mother and our Mother, the Most Blessed Ever-Virgin Mary.

            “Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” (Mt 5,3)

            Simple Faith means often times also really great, solid Faith. There are mysteries of our holy Faith which we cannot understand in its fullness, and some of them we should never could. Think here on st Augustine of Hippo and his huge effort to understand the mystery of Triune God, and a ‘little boy’ on the beach who told to hem how he too, want succeed in his task: To bring all the sea into a small hole that he made in the sand…

            This means we should have TRUST in what our Catholic Faith teaches us. Even if things which for (some, most, or all of) us are not easy to understand with our reason. Especially proclaimed doctrines, the dogmas.
            Faith + Reason, as our Barry said already before.

          • Ivan mi je ime Thanks Ivan….. I respectfully disagree with the notion of just believing. I believe that faith and reason like St JPII said “”………. are like two wings on which the human spirit rises to the contemplation of truth; and God has placed in the human heart a desire to know the truth-in a word, to know himself-so that, by knowing and loving God, men and women may also come to the fullness of truth about themselves.”
            Believing in something that we cannot reason is not what God wants. I don`t for a second believe that I will ever understand God, how could I? How can a creature understand the Creator?
            However, I do believe that I should be able to reason and logically understand something I am being told to believe.

          • Hi Joe,
            See, I must inform you on fact that your interpretation is wrong. Because I did not say ‘just believing’ (only believing) should be enough.
            I said; Have trust in your Faith, when you cannot easily understand (for example, and especially) a DOGMA.
            It is than also Faith + Reason, and not Reason + Faith. And that makes perfect sense.
            When we are in good (correct) Faith, then is our reasoning leaded by the Holy Spirit.
            Our good Christian (Catholic) faith is a gift from God, not just the result of reasoning.
            From the same Creator we have a reason as gift, to (among other things) make our faith stronger and firmer.
            And then, how stronger and firmer our faith, how better and more fruitful our reasoning.

          • Hi Barbara. Thanks for your words….. I believe doubting is a normal part of this journey of faith. As I said to Barry; I agree that faith and reason go hand in hand. That is why I have the same questions and reservations that St Bernard of Clairvaux and St Thomas Aquinas had about the concept of the Immaculate Conception. These questions have not be answered.

          • Reason is the handmaid of Faith. When Reason begins to usurp Faith (as has been the case in society for the past 200-500 years) mankind gets into trouble (and that’s putting it VERY mildly).

          • I do agree that too much of either causes an imbalance. However, what accounts for the last 200-500 years, in my opinion, is not reason but a rejection of truth, natural truths never mind supernatural.

          • But that,- rejection of the truth, happened because of the imperfect, incorrect, and bad reason.
            See, it’s again the (fault of the) reason, which must never mastering the faith.

          • GOD himself in the form of Jesus in human nature (though sinless) had to undergo temptation from Satan in the
            desert and triumphed as The New Adam as HE did all the way to HIS crucifixion.

            HE could have swatted Satan away “like a gnat” with HIS Power and Majesty but redemption’s plan involves the finite and fallen state of Man and so HE cited scripture in battle.

            When and IF we doubt we can reflect on this and ward off demonic suggestion or demonic opportunity by bringing to mind the teaching of The Church, by bringing to mind the writings of our great Saints, and by NO means least by
            bringing to mind approved Marian apparitions specifically in this case: Our Lady Of Lourdes


          • Thanks Barry……I agree that faith and reason go hand in hand. That is why I have the same questions and reservations that St Bernard of Clairvaux and St Thomas Aquinas had about the concept of the Immaculate Conception. These questions have not be answered.

          • Great Vespers, Feast of the Immaculate Conception (in Byzantine Tradition, it’s called the Conception of St. Anna):

            (1) Genesis 28:10-17; (2) Ezekiel 43:27-44:4; (3) Proverbs 9:1-11


            In Tone 1

            It is fitting that the Queen of heaven and earth,
            who is more precious than the Cherubim,
            and incomparably more glorious than the Seraphim,
            be conceived and remain immaculate as the angels,
            so that they who are servants of the Lord
            can boast of their own Queen, the Mother of God.
            Glory and praise to the Lord who willed it so,
            the Creator of all things.

            It is fitting that the unique and chosen woman
            be conceived without sin,
            and the power of Satan is now taken away;
            for the Mother of God will never bow before him.
            Glory and praise to the Lord who willed it so,
            the Creator of all things.

            It is fitting that the Second Eve
            be created and remain without sin
            in the manner of the Second Adam;
            for the rebirth of mankind now takes place,
            just as the fall came through the first Adam and the first Eve.
            Christ has renewed all through his new birth,
            and it was Mary that gave birth to Him.
            Glory and praise to the Lord who willed it so,
            the Creator of all things.


        • If it is proper that we should honour the Saints, why should we not all the more honour the Immaculate Virgin?
          Or am I misunderstanding your question?

  2. It was taught by Pope Pius XII in the encyclical “Fulgens Corona” in 1953 that the privilege of being immaculately conceived was never granted to any other person.
    This possibly explains why Adam and Eve begat no children before the Fall, as these would have been conceived without original sin.
    Is it any wonder that the Holy Virgin, one year before Darwin unleashed his wicked “On the Origin of the Species”, and its necessary denial of original sin, upon the world in 1859, appeared to an illiterate young girl in southern France and announced Herself as “I am the Immaculate Conception” (or more accurately “I am Immaculate Conception”).
    Darwin would have us believe we are all immaculately conceived. Our Lady, Queen of Prophets, appeared at Lourdes to draw attention to this Dogma to warn us of what was coming.

    • Although what you say is correct, there is another way in which the immaculate conception may be viewed — note the lack of upper case.

      There are two main defintions of conception or the verb “to conceive”. One is to bring into existence a child. The other is to bring into existence an idea. Then there is the application of these definitions as related to human persons on two levels, the natural and the supernatural.

      The bringing of a child into existence entails a cooperation between these two levels or orders. The natural parents provide the body, the vessel, and God fills the vessel with a newly created soul, the “animus”. However, from all eternity, even before the natural universe was first made reality, God, who knows all things, willed the existence of every human person from Adam to the very last man or woman. In doing so He had a conception, an idea, of each person. He conceived every person who would ever exist. Yet, God, being perfect and all good, all immaculate, is incapable of conceiving anything that is not immaculate and perfect. Thus, God immaculately conceived every person on the supernatural level. However, when God’s eternal and supernatural immaculate conception is brought into existence in the natural universe with the cooperation of the human parents, who transmit the corruption of original sin, the natural conception occurs and, like a virile virus, infects and damages that which was immaculately conceived by God on the supernatural level.

      The gift of life through sanctifying grace obtained for us by Jesus’ sacrifice and offered to us through the Church, restores us to God’s original conception of each of us. That restored conception will only be fully realized with our transitus from the natural to the supernatural order.

      • Thanks for that Mike. The first thing that jumped out at me whilst reading it was the awful wickedness of birth control.
        But here’s a question. What about Adam and Eve? They were conceived in the mind of God but when they were created they did not get corrupted. If they were “immaculately conceived” on the natural level then the Virgin could not be described as the only one to be preserved from corruption.
        But Adam and Eve were not naturally conceived at all, but were formed from the slime of the earth (Adam) and from the rib of Adam (Eve).
        This also seems to prove that the bodies of Adam and Eve could not have been conceived in the bellies of some ape (as the Darwinists would have us believe) and then animated with a human soul. For if this were the case, Adam and Eve were also “immaculately conceived” on the natural level which is of course against the Dogma of the Immaculate Conception.

        • Adam and Eve were forned by God according to His conception both physically (body) and spiritually (soul). They were immaculate and innocent. Yet, their perfection was not eternal and infinite as is God’s. Being finite in their perfection allowed them to exercise their freedom as children of God, but also provided a tiny crack theough which the ancient serpent could wiggle his way. It was thidms finite perfection, in both the angels and men, which allowed their freedom to be misused. Because the fallen angels had been created in the supernatural realm with its infinity and eternity, though they thenselves are only immortal, not eternal, their free choice immediately sealed their fate because, that choice having been made in eternity, it was an eternal event that was licked in the timelessness of eternity. Adam abd Eve’s misuse of their freedom took place in the natural realm with its limits of both time and space. Therefore, their choice was not immediately eternal and, therefore, could be corrected or set right. Their xhoice, however, had consequences for all time. The loss of original justice and innocence, the disfigurement of God’s immaculately conceived and, therefore, pristine and perfect natural creation – what St. Paul calls corruption. And the punishment of Death – which is not just the bidily demise, but includes the second or Great Death if which Jesus speaks. The damage which Adam and Eve did to their immaculate conception was like being exposed to radioactive material sufficiently to damage genes but not enough to kill. In Adam and Eve the same “genes” were seriously damaged and those “genes” will be passed on to all their offspring until the end if time. Mary was spared the mutation by the Divine Genetesist who used the “tools” of Jesus’ passion to replace the damaged “genes” with undamaged ones. And in some sense, Jesus – on the natural level – was saved from the mutation of original sin because, not having the mutated “genes,” Nary could not pass them to her Son. I think that is one reason ehy she was Immaculately Conceived on both the batural and suoernatural levels.

  3. Mary was prefigured from all eternity by God who knows all things and loved her from the beginning as the perfect reflection of His divinity. The flesh which the Son would assume from her was always immaculate. The same flesh we consume at Mass that prefigures our eternal unity with Him. When he gave us his Mother from the Cross as our Mother and Queen he entrusted her to our care similar to the trust given to John. Mary proclaimed Theotokos at the Council of Ephesus mainly due to St Cyril of Alexandria who repudiated Nestorius’ heresy that the Flesh and Blood of Jesus received from Mary did not convey the Divinity in the Holy Eucharist–has a mysterious relationship with the Holy Trinity since the Son was eternally destined to enter the universe through no other means or person than thru her. That relationship with the Son beautifully revealed when she commanded the servers at Cana to follow His instructions when he previously refused compliance to her request. That filial relationship remains in Heaven. We can be assured whatever She asks the Son on our behalf will be given.

  4. Saint Maximilian Kolbe: Born 8th January 1894 – Died 14th August 1941

    “Modern times are dominated by Satan and will be more so in the future. The conflict with hell cannot be engaged by men, even the most clever. The lmmaculata alone has from God the promise of victory over Satan. However, assumed into heaven, the Mother of God now requires our cooperation. She seeks souls who will consecrate themselves entirely to her, who will become in her hands effective instruments for the defeat of Satan and the spreading of God’s kingdom upon earth.”


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