Vignettes and Cameos
Vignette 14

In the actual order of things, Father Chaminade realized that the Incarnation of Christ had for its end the Redemption, our supernatural birth. To Christ's Incarnation there corresponds in Mary the Divine Maternity. Hence, the Incarnation leads to the Redemption; the Divine Maternity, to the Spiritual Maternity. The intimate ties relating these two functions of Mary are clearer yet if considered in the light of our incorporation with Christ. We form with Christ but one body, the Mystical Bodv of Christ. He is Head: we are members.

Seen in the fullness which marks all the works of God, Mary, who was predestined to be the Mother of Christ, ought to be the Mother of both Head and members. The Divine Maternity necessitates the Spiritual Maternity. The Spiritual Maternity completes the Divine Maternity. Both constitute a single Maternity, the Maternity uniting the Whole Christ. For Father Chaminade, a disciple of Father Olier, our incorporation in Christ constitutes a central doctrine. When our Founder mentions Mary's Spiritual Maternity he seldom fails to repeat that she is our Mother because she is the Mother of Christ, and that we are one with Him -- but one Son of Mary, one Son of God.

Cameo 14

In his Memoranda of Instructions on the Blessed Virgin our Founder writes:

Theā€¦concurrence of Mary in the mystery of the Incarnation is the ever compelling motive of our recourse to Mary for all kinds of graces. Through her charity, voluntary and direct consent of her fiat, Mary cooperated in giving the world a Liberator. This is the underlying principle. The consequence is that God having once determined to give us Jesus Christ by the Blessed Virgin, made an unalterable decree, for ''the gifts of God are without repentance" (Rom 11:29).
It is true. and will be forever, that having received through her the universal principle of grace, we also received through her mediation the divers applications throughout our various stages of Christian life. Her charity having so largely contributed to our salvation in the mystery of the Incarnation, the sole principle of grace, she will eternally contribute in all its operations which are merely consequences of the mystery.

We depend on Mary for the maintenance and increase of our spiritual life as Christ depended on her for the maintenance and increase of his corporal life.

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