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The fourth Marian dogma is the Assumption of Our Lady. The dogma of Mary’s Assumption, like her Immaculate Conception, has the added certainty of an infallible papal statement. Pope Pius XII in 1950 defined the Assumption of Mary in the following ex cathedra statement: “The Immaculate Mother of God, the ever Virgin Mary, having completed the course of her earthly life, was assumed body and soul into heavenly glory.” (1)

What evidence is present in the sources of divine revelation for the dogma of Mary’s glorious Assumption into heaven? Pope Pius XII, in his papal document, declares the Assumption a dogma “revealed by God” and refers to several sources. […]

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As a people, we are smitten by the allure of average. This standard in spirituality, which is so easily reachable, does neither the human person, nor our Catholic heritage, any valued service whatsoever. First, it represses the vision of the dignity which God has granted humanity, and secondly, it obscures the uniqueness of the favor granted to the Blessed Virgin Mary. Could it be that much of the current anti-Marian mentality is fed by a minimalistic perspective on humanity’s value? If we worship average, we cannot appreciate the favor granted to Mary. Nonetheless, the Blessed Virgin Mary remains the icon of human dignity.

In today’s generation, as in days gone by, much of our effort is centered on gratifying our whims and fancies. We worship our image and likeness and lavish extravagant gifts upon our wounded feelings and inconvenienced selves hoping to continue the appearance of being better than those miserable souls around us. It is exhausting to consider spending time and effort in areas which may not provide immediate results. So we, in our age of luxury, have done everything possible to protect our fragile existence from anything that hints at accountability, responsibility, and even the pursuit of greatness. Possibly pursuing glory for the sake of satisfying a new craving could be permissible, but certainly not for the purpose of falling in sync with a Maker unseen and unmoldable. We shall not resort back to days of mythic oppression in this period of luminous reason. It will either be a deity of our choosing or it will be none at all. […]

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In this year of the Holy Spirit, as we approach Pentecost Sunday, I rejoice to discuss one most intimately united with the Spirit of all human beings. Vatican II calls Mary “the temple” (sacrarium) of the Holy Spirit, that which St. Paul says of all Christians (1 Cor. 3:16; 6:19). Saints and four Popes have sought to express this mysterious relationship between the Virgin Mary and the Holy Spirit by the word “Spouse,” and even this word scarcely expresses the amazing relationship between this unique creature and the divine Person.

We are dealing with an aspect of Our Lady’s life which concerns us beneficiaries of the Redemption achieved by her divine Son. I will note and discuss the opposition to a papal definition of Our Lady as Co-redemptrix, Mediatrix of all graces, and Advocate, and I ask those so opposed to pause and reflect a little. These titles relate to Our Lady’s relationship to us, sinful creatures. How far is this from the title entirely justified in the Church’s teaching, one that has her intimately related to a divine Person incarnate as his Mother, and bound also to the third divine Person?

Is human arrogance at work? Is it not arrogant that we should object to so entitling her when God himself gave her a far more meaningful title? Surely to be Mother of God means far more, infinitely more, than to be Co-redemptrix, Mediatrix, Advocate, on our behalf! […]

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I. Introduction

“Reparation” is a term which has been largely and unfortunately ignored in theological circles since the Second Vatican Council. It has been all too often relegated to the category of “pious devotions” by some activists who claim that it has been rightly replaced by the “option for the poor” and by no few religious communities which were originally founded with reparation as one of their fundamental ends. It is nonetheless, I am convinced, a topic which calls for the attention of Catholics who are serious about the spiritual life and apostolic activity. I also believe that it is of particular relevance to those involved in the pro-life movement in this era which seems more contemptuous of human life than any previous period in history.

No doubt this is precisely because our world has almost entirely lost “the sense of sin,” a prophetic declaration which was first sounded by Pius XII in a radio message delivered to a Catechetical Congress held in Boston on 26 October, 1946 (1) and echoed many times since by the present Pontiff. (2) Indeed, we will have no real sense of sin until we recognize what our sins did to Christ. As both the Roman Catechism and now also the Catechism of the Catholic Church put it: “sinners were the authors and the ministers of all the sufferings that the divine Redeemer endured.” (3) I would like to sketch here briefly a theological outline of reparation to the Hearts of Jesus and Mary with specific reference to the burning pro-life issues of our day. […]

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