WHITHER MARIOLOGY ?

By Brother John M. Samaha, S.M.

MARIOLOGY IN CONTEXT 2002

As change accelerates in our cyber age, we realize the urgency of placing Mariology in our own historical context. A digest of some cogent reflections on this question by the respected Servite Mariologist and President of Rome's Marianum, Father Ignacio Calabuig, sheds light on this challenge.

A Mariology detached from history and couched only in metaphysical terms is too abstract to be interesting or meaningful. We need a Mariology based on revelation and viewed through the magisterium, a Mariology that has something worthwhile to say about the great ecclesial and social questions of our day.Such a Mariology touches the centrality of the Paschal Mystery, the primacy of the Word, the context of salvation history, new evangelization, Mary's importance as the model for a disciple, ecumenism, the role of women in the Church, the conflict between a culture of death and a culture of life, the assaults on the integrity of creation, the struggle against hunger and oppression, the pursuit of peace and many other questions of consequence.

Our today is fast becoming tomorrow. The future seeks enlightenment, and wants to avoid disorientation. It seeks a guide whose reins are in the hands of God. The eternal Word became man and entered history. He permeated history with his presence and directed it irreversibly toward the eschaton. Our future will be dominated by Christ.

To assert Christ's presence is to affirm the simultaneous presence of Mary, the woman who is indissolubly united to Christ, in his birth and in his death, in history and in glory. The Mother's role is absolutely subordinate to that of the Son.There is an infinite distance between the Divine Person of the Incarnate Word and the human person of Mary of Nazareth. But this union is nonetheless real, unbreakable, and ordained by God. Who dares oppose God's plan?

In the future Mariology will cultivate doctrinal and existential insights into Mary's manifold presence in the life of the Church. The indissoluble union between Christ and his Mother, and Mary's vital relationship to the other members of the Mystical Body reveal the unfounded nature of attempts to detach Mariology from other branches of theology. To belittle, demean, or underestimate the importance of Mariological study is to betray a gross misunderstanding, not only of Mariology, but also of Christology and ecclesiology.

Many continue to view Mariology as peripheral to the study of theology. Rigorous academic research will demonstrate the groundless nature of this persistent prejudice. The delicacy of any question connected to Mariology will require that extra effort we often speak of. Do not separate the Mother from the Son. Jesus and Mary are inextricably bound. Mariology is alive and well.


Return to The Mary Page

This page, maintained by The Marian Library/International Marian Research Institute, Dayton, Ohio 45469-1390, and created by Michael P. Duricy , was last modified Tuesday, 08/04/2009 15:00:55 EDT by Ajay Kumar . Please send any comments to jroten1@udayton.edu.