Firstly, let me assure you I’m not Protestant: what the Church has said about Mary, I believe. After all, it is not I, but the Church, which is the “pillar and foundation of the truth” (1 Tim 3:15). And if the Church says it, and the Church is true (which she most certainly is), then I must defend whatever is said by her. And so I will. But, it’s not all easy. I’ve repeatedly found myself feeling uncomfortable with certain claims made about Mary and I want to know if I’m alone in my discomfort. Granted, it wouldn’t matter: what the Church says is what goes. Still, companionship in suffering is a pleasant thing.
Mary is the mother of God, not just the human nature which Jesus possesses. Got it, thanks.
Mary has a subordinate role of mediation as the “Mediatrix of all Graces”. Alright, I’ll roll with that. Christ is still the fountain of grace, she’s just a spout through which it gets to us.
Mary is sinless. Makes sense. Who better to bring God into the world than someone undefiled?
Mary is Co-Redemptrix. ….?
That’s where the trouble starts for me. Perhaps the biggest issue is that, in reading about that last one, I haven’t been able to find a clear statement of exactly what being a co-redemptrix implies. As the title stands currently, it looks to be saying that she is a redeemer-with, one who redeems alongside. And then I’ve heard other people make it much less daunting by saying it simply means “woman with the redeemer” since the Redeemer was in her womb for a while. To me, just observing the word co-redemptrix, the latter option looks unlikely. There’s a third thing I’ve heard though, too, and that is that she can be called “co-redemptrix” because she said “yes” to Gabriel and thereby started turning the wheels of the Redemptive process. But which of these three is it?
Now if Mary suffered with Christ, it would definitely have to be in a subordinate way. That’s obvious from stuff I’ve read, from common sense, Church teaching, Scripture, etc… If you wanna say she suffered in a way subordinate to Christ’s, yet unique enough that she alone, and not others, could merit such a title, that’s fine. But to me the title as it is doesn’t do a good job conveying that and makes her seem a bit too…dare I say…exalted?
Now bear in mind this is not an infallibly defined teaching of the Church, though many people are pushing for it to be. And if it is, I’ll throw my complaints in the garbage disposal. The Church knows better than I do. But if anyone reads this who knows, for certain, what Mary’s being a “co-redemptrix” implies, can you please comment and tell me? I’m sure that if it’s explained well all ill feelings will cease (as, for example, when I was told we “worship” Mary, only to find out it meant hyperdulia and not latria, the second of which is due to God only and is the common use of “worship”).
May is the month of Mary. Ah, how controversial she can be.
May God bless you, and may His mom give you her prayers,