Honoring the Virgin Mary?

The Holy Scriptures tell us that every generation will call Mary “Blessed” (Luke 1:46-55).  In fact, she is without doubt the most blessed woman to ever live. Considering all of the great women there have been throughout history, that is no small statement to make. Yet, out of all the women who have lived in this world, it was Mary that was chosen by God for the Incarnation of our Lord.

The early Christians thought so highly of Mary that they actually referred to her as the “Second Eve”. Where Eve was disobedient and brought death into the world, Mary was obedient and through her obedience the Lord Jesus Christ became man for our salvation, trampling down death by death. “Not my will but Your will be done” are words that should be on all of our lips.

So it is that the Orthodox Church sets aside the first two weeks of August each year to remember the life and the dormition of Mary. We do it with a fast that is meant to draw us closer to her Son and to honor her. Indeed, we do call her “Blessed”.

For those who may be struggling with any kind of honor being paid to the Virgin Mary let me offer this simple thought. Consider the first words spoken by the Holy Archangel Gabriel when he visited Mary:

“Rejoice, highly favored one, the Lord is with you; blessed are you among women!” (Luke 1:28)

These words were spoken by an Archangel of God who dwells in the presence of God Almighty. Take a moment and let that sink in for a bit. If the Holy Archangel Gabriel can venerate the Virgin Mary, what is so wrong with us honoring her. Absolutely nothing! We are not worshiping her, but we are indeed venerating her.

Every generation will call her “Blessed” and nothing has changed for our generation. An excellent podcast which has this truth and much more can be found at:

https://www.ancientfaith.com/podcasts/walkinganancientpath/reconsidering_the_virgin_mary_part_1

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