Vas Honorabile
Vessel of Honor

The preeminent symbol in this illustration is the monstrance containing Our Lady, and simultaneously Mary containing and pointing to the radiating host on her chest.  The Immaculata (see twelve stars) is herself a monstrance, meaning transparent of and to God.  It is her honor to make God visible through her sinlessness and as dwelling place of the Holy Spirit and her Son Jesus Christ.  Mary is, according to 2 Timothy 21 (paraphrased here), “a vessel for lofty use (vas in honorem), dedicated, beneficial to the master of the house."   The master of the house here is Christ himself, present in the host held by the “vessel of honor," his mother Mary.  She is indeed, as Immaculata, the work of the Almighty One, and thus an “admirable vessel."  Monstrances with a Marian motif are typical of the Baroque period (see for example the famous Lepanto monstrance by J. Zeckel, 1708, Ingolstadt).

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