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Virgin Mary

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Mary is the patron saint of all human beings and cares for them with maternal care because of her role as a mother to Jesus Christ the Savior of the world. The Virgin Mary is honored as a spiritual mother for people of many faiths, including Muslims, Jews and New Age believers.

Today, Christian pastors will give you a detailed presentation of the History of the Virgin Mary accompanied by a Biography of the Holy Mother.

A) Virgin Mary Biography

1. The importance of Mary in religion

The Virgin Mary, mother of Jesus Christ, is one of the key symbols of Christianity. A woman whose cult has changed the world. However, she is perhaps one of the most misunderstood biblical people. The Virgin Mary is well known in the Bible but there is not much archaeological evidence about her life. Over the centuries, the history of Mary whose real name was "Miriam" has changed the vision of men and religion. His greatest claim to glory was to deliver a boy named Joshua, known as Jesus, the Son of the Almighty. As a Holy Mother in Christianity, she has been described as a symbol of purity and humility. 

In addition to these official titles given to her by Christianity, the Virgin Mary has acquired great cultural importance. Popular devotion to the Virgin Mary in forms such as: feasts and the rosary, played an extremely important role in the lives of Roman Catholics and Orthodox. Modern Roman Catholicism has stressed that the doctrine of Mary is not an isolated belief but must be considered in the context of two other Christian doctrines: the doctrine of Christ and the doctrine of the church. What is said about Mary is derived from what is said about Jesus. She was also known as the first believer and as the one in whom the humanity of the church was embodied in a representative way.

2. Definition of the word "Virgin"

The word virgin comes from the Latin "virgo", which means "young girl" or sexually inexperienced woman. This word served as the basis for the stories of Mary as a woman who had never had sex with a man. However, historically, the term virgin meant "one in itself". A woman who didn't need a man. That didn't necessarily mean she didn't have one. This interpretation better represents a woman who was independent, financially free, mentally strong and not overly dependent on her lover or partner.

However, the researchers also suggest that the word virgin could be applied by older societies to women who were independent in different fields. It is possible that Mary could have been autonomous, but neither the Bible nor other texts deepen this idea.

The greatest misunderstanding in the history of the Virgin Mary comes from an explicit error. It is common for transcriptions to be based on previous translations and the meaning of words is often decoded by specialists in specific languages. In addition, many translations of this story have been made from dictionaries created by Latin specialists to find the key to the mystery behind the word "virgin". Mary could probably have been called a virgin because of her charism, her strength and her power to support her son.

3. Mother of Jesus

The Virgin Mary is known by many names such as: the Blessed Virgin, Mother Mary, Our Lady, Mother of God, Queen of Angels, Queen of Sorrows, and Queen of the Universe. But also: Holy Mary, Mary of Nazareth or Blessed Virgin Mary. It is known thanks to biblical references, which are however too rare to build a complete biography.

The development of Mary's doctrine can be traced through the titles attributed to her in the history of Christian communions: the incarnation, Mother Virgin, Mother of God, immaculate, and assumed in heaven. In Western Christian art, Mary is most often represented as a very respectful person.

Mary was born into a pious Jewish family in Galilee that now belongs to Israel when she was part of the former Roman Empire. At the time Mary was about 13 years old, historians say she was engaged to Joseph, a devout Jewish man. It was during her engagement that she learned through an angelic visit of the plans that God had for her to serve Jesus Christ, the Son of God in heaven as Mother on Earth. Mary responded with faithful obedience to God's plan, despite the personal challenges it would present to her. 

4. Joachim and Anne: Mary's Parents

Mary's parents were Saint Joachim and Saint Anne, whom the Catholic tradition says the angels visited separately to inform them that Anne was waiting for Mary. The Parents of Mary consecrated her to God in a Jewish temple at the age of three. The Gospel of James, which was probably put into its definitive written form at the beginning of the 2nd century, describes Mary's father, Joachim, as a rich member of one of Israel's Twelve Tribes. Joachim was deeply saddened with his wife Anne by their absence of children. He was referring to Abraham, said the first Christian writer, that on the last day God gave him a daughter. 

Joachim and Anne began to devote themselves entirely and rigorously to prayer and fasting, first wondering if their inability to conceive a child could mean God's dissatisfaction with them.

5. Birth of the Virgin Mary

After Mary's birth, according to James' Gospel, Anne made a sanctuary in the little girl's room and allowed nothing common or impure because of the child's particular holiness. The same scripture reports that at the age of one, his father made a great feast and invited priests, scribes, elders and all the people of Israel to celebrate and venerate the birth of Mary. Saint Augustine described the birth of the Blessed Virgin Mary as an event of cosmic and historical importance and an appropriate prelude to the birth of Jesus Christ. "It is the flower of the fields from which the precious lily of the valley flowers," he said.

The circumstances of the Virgin Mary's childhood and youth are not directly recorded in the Bible, but other documents and traditions describing the events of her birth are cited by some of the early Christian authors of the early centuries of the Church.

Joachim brought the child to the priests, continued the story, and they blessed her by saying: "God of our fathers, bless this child and give him an eternal name so that he may be named from generation to generation...". And he brought her to the high priests, and they blessed her, saying, "O God very high, look upon this child, and bless her with the supreme blessing, which shall be eternal."

2) Mary of Nazareth: Apparition and Religion

1. Virgin Mary Miracle

People have attributed a large number of miracles to God's action through the Virgin Mary. Many Christians have reported many miracles performed by Mary that have happened through her since she went to heaven. There have been several apparitions on earth to deliver messages and encourage all believing Christians to believe in God.

2. Appearance of the Virgin Mary

Among the famous apparitions of the Virgin Mary, we can mention several of them:

France

Portugal

Mexico

Ireland

Bosnia and Herzegovina

Japan

Rwanda

Egypt

D. Appearance of Mary Sister Catherine

We read in the life of Sister Catherine, an Augustinian nun, that where this servant of God lived, there was also a woman named Mary. In her youth she was a fisherman who obstinately persevered in her bad ways until an extremely old age. For this reason, she was banished by her fellow citizens who were forced to live in a cave beyond the boundaries of the place. She died in a state of repugnant corruption abandoned by all. One day, a soul from purgatory appeared to her, and told her, Sister Catherine, how unfortunate my destiny is... You commend to God the souls of all those who die, and you had no mercy for your soul alone?

The Blessed Virgin Mary would have asked her to wear the images of the miraculous medal as we know it today, telling her to engrave them on several medals. This so that each person who wears it may receive the graces of Mary. Catherine approved her request to create the miraculous medal that became extremely popular during the cholera epidemic in 1832 and to this day....

Sister Catherine immediately had these masses said in her favour, and after a few days this soul appeared to her again, brighter than the sun and said to her: "I thank you, Sister Catherine. I now go to Heaven to sing of God's mercy and pray for you." A joy and a sadness at the same time to see Mary go to heaven. To have it close to you even when decorating our religious house with paintings of the Virgin Mary would be a great joy!

E. Mary Religion: Christian Belief

CATHOLIC 
Catholics say that Mary remained a virgin all her life. Catholic tradition teaches that she was sinless and a virgin in perpetuity. Catholics also believe in the miracle of the Assumption, which means that Mary did not die a natural human death. She was assumed body and soul from Earth to heaven while she was still alive. Catholics believe that Protestants ignore Mary. They base their beliefs on the Bible and the tradition of the Roman Catholic Church.

The belief among Catholics is that she got pregnant by a miracle. In this way, she is believed to be sinless, which makes her a suitable mother for the Son of God.

ORTHODOX 
Orthodox Christians believe in the miracle of Dormition. This means that Mary died naturally and that her soul went to heaven. While his body remained on earth for three days before being resurrected and lifted to heaven. Catholic and Orthodox Christians believe that Mary was miraculously taken to heaven in an unusual way. Orthodox Christians and Catholics honor Mary's virginity.

PROTESTANT 
According to the Protestants, only Jesus the Son of God was sinless. Protestants also believe that Mary had other children with her husband Joseph biologically before giving birth to Jesus. But Catholics believe, on the contrary, that they were cousins or stepchildren of Mary of Joseph's former marriage to a woman who had died. When it comes to Mary, Protestants believe that Catholics are doing too much with her. Protestants base their beliefs of Jesus, Mary and everything related to religion solely on the Bible. Protestant Christians believe that she was not without sin.


MUSLIM
Muslims believe that Mary was miraculously a perfect person from the moment of her conception. Islam says that God gave Mary a special grace when He created her so that she could live a perfect life. All Muslims believe in the miracle of the Lord's birth, in which Mary conceived Jesus Christ as a virgin, by the power of the Holy Spirit.

F. Mary new Ark of the Covenant

The Virgin Mary has become a symbol for many things, including the famous Ark of the Covenant. The Ark of the Old Testament of the Covenant contained three elements: The Word of God in the form of stone tablets (the 10 commandments), the manna (bread) of Heaven, and the rod of Aaron who grew and came to life (Hebrews 9:4). Just like that, the womb of the Blessed Virgin Mary contained Jesus Christ.

The living Word of God (John 1:1), the bread of life (John 6:48) and the leader with an iron rod that also came to life (Rev.12:5). At Mary's Annunciation, Gabriel told her that the power of the Most High would eclipse her (Luke 1:35). The Ark was made of pure gold and was a very holy symbol. This is parallel to Mary's Catholic teaching, which is also pure and holy. These suggestions support the idea that Mary was portrayed as a symbolic sacred vessel that gave life to Jesus. The Ark of the Covenant was so holy that no ordinary person could touch it. Uzziah stretched him out to stabilize him, and was instantly struck and died (2 Samuel 6:7)."

C) Mother of God

1. Angel Gabriel: The Good News

The Christmas story begins with a teenage girl called Mary, who is told in a special way that she will give birth to a very special baby. In the sixth month, God sent the Angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a city in Galilee, to the virgin who had promised to marry a man named Joseph, a descendant of David. The angel approached her and said, "Greetings, you who are the beloved! The Lord is with you". Mary was very troubled by her words and wondered what kind of greeting it could be. But the angel said to her: "Do not be afraid Mary, you have found grace with God. You will be pregnant and give birth to a son by giving him the name Jeshua. He will be great and will be called the Son of God. The Lord God will give him the throne of David his father, and he will rule over Jacob's house forever. His kingdom will never end.

I am the servant of the Lord, Mary answered. I will do what God has asked me to do, as you said. Then the angel left. Mary would have been very surprised if the angel Gabriel had said that the Holy Spirit would be in her, because in old Jewish stories, only very important people could have taken her place. She might not even have thought it would happen to her. So she went to see her cousin Elizabeth to see if it was really true. She did so even before she spoke to Joseph about Gabriel's coming and Jesus' birth.

You would be delighted to learn more about the birth of our lord. Written with passion and love for our God, the Origin of the Christmas Festival will tell you the whole story of the coming of our savior

2. Mary and Joseph

Tiberius, the earthly father of the lord, took the name of Joseph and created a family with Mary and their grandson Jeshua (Jesus). Joseph and Mary were a very ordinary couple in Israel at that time. They probably would have been very poor. Joseph was a carpenter and this work was considered by some religious leaders to be a duty of religion rather than a profession. Joseph and Mary were both descendants of King David of Israel. But at that time, his family was in an unprecedented state of poverty. Mary was also related to the traditional families of the priests of Israel through her cousin Elizabeth.

Mary was probably between 14 and 16 years old when she gave birth to Jesus. It was a very common age for young women to get engaged and married at that time. The son of God was therefore the son of a teenage mother. Joseph was probably a little older than he was about 30 years old. Under Jewish law, a commitment like that of Joseph and Mary was treated almost like a marriage and could only be broken by a formal divorce.

3. The Son of God

The boy was famous for performing all kinds of miracles that he had learned from the former masters. Some of his talents were walking on water, turning water into wine, and many others. The name Jesus (or Jeshua as it would have been called at the time) was a very common name in Israel. The name Jesus means "Savior" and has a very important meaning in the history of Christianity.

Jesus was not born of the union of a man and a woman, but of the supernatural work of the Holy Spirit who replaced the seed of a man. And what can this mean if it is only the human nature of Mary and the divine nature of the Holy Spirit united in the person of Jesus? Mary brought her humanity. The Holy Spirit brought the divinity. And Jesus, the man of God born, with a divine nature and a human nature in one person.


4. The Blessed Virgin Mary

Over the centuries, some priests and bishops have wondered whether Christians should worship Mary, the mother of Jesus. Perhaps they were aware of the error that appeared in the translations of the first texts, but they felt that they could do nothing to correct this error.

However, this does not change Mary's position in history. Some argue that Bible stories cannot be read as true historical accounts, but as symbolic legends. This idea creates even more debate between religious and some researchers. Nevertheless, as time passes and new discussions tell more about her, Mary's story becomes even more fascinating.

5. Mary, patron saint

Mary is considered the patron saint of all humanity, as well as groups such as mothers, blood donors, travellers and those who work in the travel industry (such as air and sea crews). Cooks, food industry workers, construction workers, those who make clothes, jewellery, furniture in many places and churches around the world and finally those who seek spiritual enlightenment.

6. Pregnant Virgin Mary: Creator of the Savior

The first generalized theological controversy about Mary concerned the advisability of applying to Mary the title of Theotokos, which means "bearer of God" or "mother of God". The title seems to have appeared in devotional usage, probably in Alexandria in the 3rd or 4th century. It was a logical deduction from the doctrine of the entire divinity of Christ which was established as a dogma in the 4th century. Those who defended this dogma were also those who drew the conclusions.

Perhaps, as the 19th century English theologian, Cardinal John Henry Newman, assumed. It indicated the determination of the Council of Nicaea in 325 that Christ was not only the highest of creatures, but belonged to the divine side of the line between Creator and creature. Who was even responsible for the rapid growth of devotion and speculation related to Mary as a being being the highest of creatures.

By the end of the 4th century, the Theotokos had successfully established itself in various sections of the church, because it seemed to him that the supporters of the title blurred the distinction between the divine and the human in Christ. Nestorius, the patriarch of Constantinople, opposed its use, preferring the less explicit title Christotokos, which means "bearer of Christ" or "mother of Christ". With other aspects of his teaching, Nestorius' objections were condemned at the Council of Ephesus in 431.

D) Mary in the Bible

1. Mary in the Evangelism

Mary appears in the Gospels in the following incidents:

  • the Annunciation
  • the visit with Elisabeth
  • his relative and John the Baptist's mother
  • the precursor of Jesus (Luke 1:39 ff.)
  • the birth of Jesus and his presentation in the Temple (Luke 2:1ff.)
  • the coming of the Magi and the flight to Egypt (Mt 2:1f)
  • the visit of the Passover to Jerusalem when Jesus was 12 years old (Luke 2:41 ff.)
  • the wedding in Cana in Galilee
  • although his name is not used (John 2:1 ff.)
  • the attempt to see Jesus during his teaching (Mark 3:31 ff.)
  • the station on the cross where, apparently widowed, it was entrusted to the disciple John (John 19:26 ff.).

2. The Old Testament

Mary was mentioned very little in the Old Testament and we did not have much information about her. The Old Testament passages presented in support of it by the Church Fathers as: Ezekiel 44:2 and Solomon 4:12 were probably convincing only to those who had already accepted the doctrine.

3. The New Testament

Different proposals can be deduced from the New Testament's affirmation of Mary's virginity. In the conception of Jesus, including in the doctrine of which she remained virgin during her birth and until the end of her life. By far the most voluminous accounts of Mary in the New Testament are the childhood accounts in the Gospels of Luke and Matthew. In their current form, both accounts make it a point of honour to affirm that Jesus was conceived in the womb of Mary without any human action (Matthew 1:18; Luke 1:34).

The passages written by Luke and Matthew seem to be the only references to this subject in the New Testament. The apostle Paul does not speak of it anywhere. The gospel according to Mark begins with Jesus as an adult. The Gospel according to John begins with its prehistoric existence and does not refer to the virgin birth. Matthew does not attach any theological significance to the miracle, but it is possible that the angel's words in Luke 1:35 are intended to link the holiness of the child to the mother's virginity. Many textual variations of Matthew 1:16, some with the words "Joseph begat Jesus", have led some scholars to wonder whether such a statement was part of Matthew's original history.

In post-biblical Christian literature, the most voluminous discussions about Mary have focused on her virginity. On the basis of the New Testament, it is the unanimous teaching of all the Orthodox Fathers of the church that Mary conceived Jesus with her virginity intact. A teaching that was part of the first Christian beliefs and approved by the reformers of the 16th century as well as by most Protestant churches and believers since the Reformation. One of the most controversial theories about Mary is that of the "Immaculate Conception". According to the New Testament, conception does not refer to her sexual condition when she gave birth to the Lord Jesus Christ.

4. The Creed of the Apostles

The Creed of the Apostles seems to have a lesson on virginity in part when it says "born of the Virgin Mary". Although this teaching on how Mary gave birth to Jesus first took place in the 2nd century in James' apocryphal or noncanonical Protevangelium, its origins and evolution are not easy to trace. Some scholars have even argued that the primary connotation of the expression "born of the Virgin Mary" in the Creed of the Apostles was the same insistence of the church on the authentic virility of Jesus. This insistence has been the irreducible minimum in all the theories about Mary that have appeared in Christian history.

5. The Koran

The Koran or the Holy Book of Islam honours the Virgin Mary in more ways than the Bible. She is honored as the only woman in the book who has a whole chapter on her. The chapter "Maryam" refers to the Virgin Mary where she stands out singularly. What is even more interesting is that Mary is mentioned more often in the Koran than in the New Testament.

6. Mary and Jesus

The Bible tells of many moments of Mary accompanied by Jesus Christ during her life. One of the most significant moments was when she and Joseph lost track of the Lord and found him teaching in a temple when he was 12 years old (Luke chapter 2). She walked from Nazareth to Capernaum carrying her children with her to visit her son Jesus. We also know that Mary was at Jesus' crucifixion in Jerusalem. She was near the cross when Jesus died there for the sins of the world (John chapter 19).

Before dying on the cross, Jesus Christ asked the apostle John to take care of Mary for the rest of his life. Many historians believe that Mary later settled in the ancient city of Ephesus (now part of Turkey) with John, and ended her earthly life there.

7. The Birth of Jesus: Born of a Human Woman

The first allusion to Mary in Christian literature is probably the expression "born of a woman" in Galatians 4:4, which was written above all the gospel. As parallels such as Job 14:1 and Matthew 11:11 suggest, the sentence is a Hebrew way of talking about a person's essential humanity. Applied to Jesus, "born of a woman" was therefore intended to affirm that he was a real man. In contrast to the attempt a few years later in various Gnostic systems, a 2nd century dualist religion denies having had a completely human life.

For the ancient world, only one human parent was needed to ensure that a person was truly human, and from the beginning it was the human mother of Jesus Christ who provided this assurance.

This insistence has been the irreducible minimum in all the theories about the Virgin Mary that have appeared in Christian history. Her role as a mother outweighs all the other roles assigned to her in devotion and dogma. Those who deny virgin birth generally claim to do so in the interest of true humanity, seeing a contradiction between the idea of Jesus as the human son of a human mother and the idea that he had no human father.


E) Historical Facts about Mary

1. Death of the Virgin Mary

There is no word in the Bible about Mary's death. That being said, everything we know or ignore about his death comes from apocryphal accounts. There are many stories that flourish but many stick to the same story describing: his last days, his funeral, his burial and his resurrection. In almost every story, Mary was resurrected by Jesus and welcomed into heaven. One of the most popular versions describing Mary's death is the first story of Bishop John of Thessaloniki. In the story, an angel tells Mary that she will die in three days. She then summoned all the people attached to her to stay two nights in her house. They sang instead of crying. Three days after the funeral, as for Jesus Christ, the apostles opened her sarcophagus and discovered that she had been taken by the Lord.

No account of the place and circumstances of the death of the Virgin Mary was universally accepted in the church, although paintings depicting her falling asleep in the ancient Ionian city of Ephesus were quite common. No burial site has been recognized although there is a grave in Jerusalem that would belong to her. And no miracles were attributed to the relics of his body.

However, these arguments of silence are not enough to establish dogma and, on the positive side, even the first doctrinal and liturgical evidence in support of this idea appeared relatively late in history. Finally, in 1950, Pope Pius XII formalized the dogma by declaring that the Immaculate Mother of God, the eternal Virgin Mary, during her earthly life, was assumed body and soul to the glory of heaven.

2. Mary New Eve

One of the interpretations of the person and work of Jesus Christ in the New Testament is the formulation of parallels between him and Adam: "As all die in Adam, so all will live in Christ" (1 Corinthians 15:22). The contrast between Adam's disobedience by which sin came into the world and Christ's obedience by which the salvation from sin was accomplished (Romans 5:12-19), is decisive in this parallel. Whether or not the story of the Annunciation in the first chapter of the Gospel according to Luke is intended to suggest a similar parallel between Eve and Mary, it quickly became a theme for Christian reflection. Writing towards the end of the 2nd century, the Father of the Irenaean Church drew a parallel between Eve, who was a virgin, who had disobeyed the word of God, and Mary, who, being a virgin, had obeyed it.

In any case, the parallel attributed to Mary and her obedience comes from an active part in the redemption of the human race: all had died in Adam, but Eve had participated in the sin that had caused her. All were saved in Christ, but Mary had participated in the life that made this possible.

3. Immaculate Conception: Original Sin

When the Immaculate Conception (preserved from original sin) was promulgated, petitions began to come to the Vatican to obtain a definition of the Assumption of the Virgin in heaven. In the following century, more than eight million people signed such petitions. However, Rome hesitated because the doctrine was difficult to define on the basis of the Scriptures and the first witnesses of the Christian tradition.

It is the distinction between original sin (the sin with which all men are born) and real sin (the sin that men commit during their lifetime), which is firmly established in Western theology by the same Augustine. He himself forced an additional clarification of what it means to be without Mary's sin.

Some eastern theologians of the 4th and 5th centuries were ready to attribute real sins to her, but most eastern and western theologians came to accept the idea that Mary had never committed any sins. An idea that was expressed even among the reformers of the 16th century. But was she also free from original sin? And if so, how?

Thomas Aquinas, the most important medieval theologian in the West, took a representative position when he taught that his conception was tarnished (extinguished). Like that of all humans, but that God suppressed the original sin in her, apparently before she was born. At the first moment of its conception, it was preserved immaculate from any stain of original sin. By the singular grace and privilege granted to him by Almighty God and by the merits of the birth of Christ

Jesus, the Savior of humanity.


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