As the Bible relates, something extraordinary happened 2000 years ago: a humble woman of Jewish origin named Mary received an announcement from the angel Gabriel, who had been sent by God. The angel informed him that he would have a son and that his name would be Jesus, who in turn was the son of God.
Since then, this woman has gone down in history as the mother of God and to refer to her they speak of the Virgin Mary.
The virginity of Mary
Regarding her virginity, it must be remembered that the early Christian church understood that sexuality had a sinful component, so the only worthy way for Mary to be the mother of God was through a non-sinful and immaculate conception. For this reason, the New Testament that was written during the first centuries of the Christian movement indicates that Mary was conceived by the Holy Spirit. This idea is known among Catholics as the dogma of the Immaculate Conception.
In the New Testament and in the apocryphal Gospels there is little information about the figure of Mary
Little information about the life of Mary appears in the New Testament. It is said that he was from Nazareth and that his parents were named Joaquín and Ana. In the apocryphal Gospels some complementary information is provided, especially about the education he had in his childhood and the attention he received from the priests of the Temple. Despite the limited information, the figure of the Virgin Mary is one of the pillars of Christianity. Regarding her husband José, there are not too many data in the Gospels either, since it is only known that he worked as a carpenter and that he probably died when their son had already reached the age of 12.
The Virgin Mary for Catholics
The Virgin Mary is, first of all, the mother of God and not only the mother of Jesus Christ. In this sense, it must be remembered that according to Catholic doctrine God has three differentiated persons, since he is Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
Catholics worship Mary because that is how her own son, Jesus, did. In the tradition of the Holy Rosary, the main virtues attributed to the Virgin Mary are remembered: love of God, humility, faith, chastity and obedience.
In Catholic theology there is a branch that is dedicated to the study of the Virgin Mary, Mariology.
From the perspective of Catholics, devotion to the Virgin Mary is based on the direct relationship she had with Jesus Christ, the second person of the Holy Trinity.
The prayer of Catholics addressed to the Virgin Mary expresses a deep desire: that the mother of Jesus Christ can intercede for men before God.
Photos: Fotolia - thauwald / Renáta Sedmáková