Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Hyperdulia

December, the Christmas month--->
<---Sins and its many consequences




Hyperdulia it´s the special veneration due to the Blessed Virgin Mary offered by Roman Catholics to the Virgin Mary as the most exalted of human beings.
Vatican II’s Dogmatic Constitution on the Church states:

It is substantially less than the cultus latria (adoration), which is due to God alone.
But it is higher than the cultus dulia (veneration), due to angels and other saints.
As the Church understands the veneration of Mary, it is to be closely associated but subordinated to that of her Son.

"The various forms of piety towards the Mother of God, which the Church has approved within the limits of sound and orthodox doctrine according to the dispositions and understanding of the faithful, ensure that while the mother is honored, the Son through whom all things have their being and in whom it has pleased the Father that all fullness should dwell, is rightly loved and glorified and His commandments are observed".
(Second Vatican Council, Lumen Gentium, VII, 66). (Etym. Latin hyperdulia, virtue of deep submission.)

Roman Catholic Church, Orthodox Church and Eastern Catholic Churches.

It is practiced by the Eastern Orthodox Church, the Roman Catholic, and Eastern Catholic Churches.
In some denominations, veneration is shown outwardly by respectfully bowing or making the sign of the cross before a saint's icon, relics, or statue.

In Roman Catholic, and Orthodox theology, veneration is a type of honor distinct from the adoration due to God alone.
According to Deacon Dr. Mark Miravelle, of Franciscan University of Steubenville, the English word "worship" has been associated with both veneration and adoration:

There are three levels of reverence that we in this life offer:

LATRIA:
is reserved for God alone.
The highest honor that is possible is given to God alone, and that is called in Latin “latria.” The adoration, which is known as latria in classical theology, is the worship and homage that is rightly offered to God alone.
It is the acknowledgement of excellence and perfection of an uncreated, divine person.

It is the worship of the Creator that God alone deserves.

The honor given to God through latria or adoration is the highest honor that can be given. It recognizes God as being the Creator, Redeemer and Sanctifier.
God is infinite. He is all good in Himself. Obviously He is our just judge.
None of that honor can be given to a creature, and if it is done it is idolatry.

HYPERDULIA:
is reserved for the Blessed Virgin.
The seconds highest honor that is given is “hyperdulia,” and that is given to the Blessed Virgin alone.
Catholic theology also includes the term hyperdulia for the type of veneration specifically paid to Mary, mother of Jesus, in Catholic tradition.

Hyperdulia or veneration is given to only one created being, and that is the Blessed Virgin Mary. It shows that Mary, the Mother of God, is so highly blessed and endowed by God that she stands alone in her class.
She is above all the angels and all the Saints. She is the Queen of Heaven.

This distinction is spelled out in the dogmatic conclusions of the Seventh Ecumenical Council (787), which also decreed that iconoclasm (forbidding icons and their veneration) is a heresy that amounts to a denial of the incarnation of Jesus.

Now, the Roman Catholic tradition has a well established philosophy for the veneration of the Virgin Mary via the field of Mariology with Pontifical schools such as the Marianum specifically devoted to this task.

DULIA:
The third type of honor is “dulia,” and that is given specially to all the angels and saints in heaven, or a dead person who has been identified by a church committee as singular in the traditions of the religion, beside icons and relics of the saints.

Dulia or veneration goes to all the good angels and to all the Saints. No matter how good a person is he will not receive veneration in the Catholic Church until he is declared venerable and finally a Saint by the Church.

The veneration, known as dulia in classical Catholic theology, is the honor due to the excellence and a created person.
This refers to the excellence exhibited by the created being who likewise deserves recognition and honor.

After that there are various grades of honor. We are told to honor our parents.
We must honor our superiors. The wife must honor her husband and the husband must honor the wife.

As noted above, simple honor must be given to all those in honorable positions. Among men the person who rightly receives the highest honor is the Pope, the Vicar of Christ.
After him come the dignitaries in the Church.
Then come the dignitaries in the civil order. They are kings, governors, judges, police and the like.

In the domestic order, that is, in the family the highest honor goes to the father. Then comes the mother. The children likewise must honor their teachers and elders in general.

There is nothing contrary to the proper adoration of God when we offer the appropriate honor and recognition that created persons deserve based on achievement in excellence.
Here a further clarification should be made regarding the use of the term "worship" in relation to the categories of adoration and veneration.

Some schools of theology use the term "worship" to introduce both adoration and veneration.
They would distinguish between "worship of adoration" and "worship of veneration."
The word "worship" (in the same way the theological term "cult" is traditionally used) in these classical definitions was not at all synonymous with adoration, but could be used to introduce either adoration or veneration.
Hence Catholic writers will sometimes use the term "worship" not to indicate adoration, but only the worship of veneration given to Mary and the saints.

Church theologians have long adopted the terms latria for the type of worship due to God alone, and dulia for the veneration given to saints and icons.

DEFINITION BETWEEN ABSOLUTE AND RELATIVE HONOR

In order to avoid confusion we must explain what is done in the honoring of the relics of Saints.
We likewise give honor to statues and pictures of Saints and angels.
Heretics are wont to accuse us of idolatry when we pray before a holy picture or a statue of a Saint or angel.
They are confused over the method of our honor.

The words to remember are absolute and relative.
When honor is give directly to the person involved, the honor is called absolute.
When it is directed to an image of the person it is called relative honor.
Even little children who grow up in a Catholic home know this distinction.

We have an example to explain that distinction.
A teacher asked the children in catechism class: what is the difference between a Crucifix and the Holy Eucharist (after consecration).
A child answer correctly when she said: on the Crucifix we see Jesus, but he is not there.
In the Eucharist we do not see Jesus, but He is there.

In the above definition of terms we can say that Christ is present relatively on the wood of the crucifix, and in the Eucharist He is present absolutely.
We state it again. To images we give relative honor, and to the persons we give absolute honor.

If one pins a flower on his mother on Mothers’ Day he gives her absolute honor, and if he pins a flower on her picture he gives her relative honor.
The honor given with relative honor does not stop in the manufactured image.
It really glances on to the one who is absent.

IDOLATRY. Who is idolatry?

When a heathen prays before an image, he makes his honor go directly to and remain in that manufactured object.
If one held before him a sack of wool and had him shoot a bullet into it, the bullet would stick in that wool.
However, when we have relative honor it is as if one shot a bullet against a stone. It will not stay there, but it hits another object.

There are times when we find books that say we venerate sacred objects.
That statement needs correction. We give relative adoration (latria) to the images of God.
We give relative super veneration (hyperdulia) to images of the Blessed Virgin Mary. We give relative veneration (dulia) to the images of the angels and Saints
(other than the Blessed Virgin Mary).

We need a few examples. When we give our honor before a Christmas crib we give relative adoration to the Infant Jesus. We give relative super veneration the Blessed Virgin. Finally we give relative veneration to St. Joseph.

When we worship before the Holy Eucharist (say at Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament) we give absolute adoration to the Eucharist because Jesus is really, truly and substantially present there.
Let us take a picture of that divine service. We can mount that picture of the Eucharist on a wall in our home.
Then we give that picture of the Eucharist relative adoration.

When we pray without images before us to God, the angels and the Saints we give absolute honor to them.
There is no mediator (image) for our honor to go to them.
The reason that images are used is to lead us to think of and pray to God, His angels and His Saints.

DISCTINCTION BETWEEN HONOR TO GOD AND HONOR TO SAINTS

What follows is not intrinsic to honor except that it makes clear that we Catholics always make a clear distinction between the honor given to God and that given to the angels and the Saints.

Take for example the Litany of the Blessed Virgin. We respond to the opening invocations with “have mercy on us.” However, as soon as we say, “Holy Mary” we say: “Pray for us.” We ask the angels and Saints to go to God and plead for us before God.
Holy Mother Church directs us in that method of prayer, and it most pleasing to God.

Whenever goodness is honored in an angel or a Saint we recognize that all of their goodness is from God.
Of course, we honor the angels and Saints for their faithfulness to God.
It was that faithfulness that moved God to give many of the extraordinary gifts we see in the angels and the Saints.

Our entering heaven depends on our treatment of God in our practice of the Catholic faith.
Only those who have sanctifying grace in their souls are able to give to God an honor (latria) which is supernaturally pleasing to Him.
Only sanctifying grace makes man God-like, and therefore they belong to His family on earth, and they belong to His family in heaven forever.

Given, March 17, 1999. By Pope Pius XIII.

SWEETNESS OF THE NAME OF VIRGIN MARY DURING LIFE AND AT DEATH

by St. Alphonsus de Ligouri.

The great name of Mary, which was given to the divine Mother, did not come to her from her parents, nor was it given to her by the mind or will of man, as is the case with all other names that are imposed in this world; but it came from heaven, and was given her by a divine ordinance.

This is attested by St. Jerome (De Nat. M. V.), St. Epiphanius (Or. de Praes. Deip.), St. Antoninus (Hist. p. 1, t. 4, c. 6, #10), and others.
"The name of Mary came from the treasury of the divinity" ("De thesauro Divinitatis, Mariae nomen evolvitur"--S. de Annunt.), says St. Peter Damian.

Ah, yes, O Mary, it was from that treasury that thy high and admirable name came forth; for the most Blessed Trinity, says Richard of St. Laurence, bestowed on thee a name above every other name after that of thy Son, and ennobled it with such majesty and power, that he willed that all heaven, earth, and hell, on only hearing it, should fall down and venerate it; but I will give the author's own words:
"The whole Trinity, O Mary, gave thee a name after that of thy Son above every other name, that in thy name every knee should bow, of things in heaven, on earth, and under the earth"
("Dedit tibi, Maria, tota Trinitas nomen quod est super omne nomen, post nomen Filii sui, ut in nominee ejus omne genu flectatur coelestium, terrestrium, et infernorum"--De Laud. B. M. l. 1, c. 2).

But amongst the other privileges of the name of Mary, and which were given to it by God, we will now examine that of the peculiar sweetness found in it by the servants of this most holy Lady during life and in death.

"The name of Mary is a tower of strength, which saves sinners from punishment,
and defends the just from the assaults of hell."--St. Laurence Justinian.

And in the first place, speaking of the course of our life, the holy anchorite Honorius used to say, that "this name of Mary if filled with every sweetness and divine savor" ("Hoc nomen Mariae plenum est omni dulcedine suavitate divina"--Ap. Lyr. Tris. Mar l. 2, m. 13); so much so, that the glorious St. Anthony of Padua found the same sweetness in the name of Mary that St. Bernard found in that of Jesus.

"Name of Jesus!" exclaimed the one. "O name of Mary!" replied the other; "joy in the heart, honey in the mouth, melody to the ear of her devout clients" ("Jubilus in corde, mel in ore, melos in aure"--Dom. 3 Quadr. s. 2).

It is narrated in the life of the Ven. Father Juvenal Ancina, Bishop of Saluzzo, that in pronouncing the name of Mary he tasted so great and sensible a sweetness, that, after doing so, he licked his lips.
We read also that a lady at Cologne told the Bishop Massilius, that as often as she uttered the name of Mary she experienced a taste far sweeter than honey.
The Bishop imitated her, and experienced the same thing" (Casarius, Dial. l. 7, c. 50).

St. Laurence once said, "do the angels so often ask the name of their Queen?"
He answers, "That it was so sweet even to the angels to hear it pronounced, that they desired to hear that sweet name in reply" ("Forsitan quia dulce nomen sibi desiderant responderi"--De Laud. V. M. l. 1, c. 2).

But here I do not intend to speak of that sensible sweetness, for it is not granted to all; I speak of that salutary sweetness of consolation, of love, of joy, of confidence, of strength, which the name of Mary ordinarily brings to those who pronounce it with devotion.

The Abbot Francone, speaking on this subject, says, "there is no other name after that of the Son, in heaven or on earth, whence pious minds derive so much grace, hope, and sweetness".

After the most sacred name of Jesus, the name of Mary is so rich in every good thing, that on earth and in heaven there is no other from which devout souls receive so much grace, hope, and sweetness.

"For," he continues, "there is something so admirable, sweet, and divine in this name of Mary, that when it meets with friendly hearts it breathes into them an odor of delightful sweetness."
And he adds, in conclusion, "that the wonder of this great name is, that if heard by the lovers of Mary a thousand times, it is always heard again with renewed pleasure, for they always experience the same sweetness each time it is pronounced"

The Blessed Henry Suso (Dial. c. 16), also speaking of this sweetness, says, "that when he named Mary, he felt himself so excited to confidence, and inflamed with such love and joy with which he pronounced the beloved name, he desired that his heart might leave his breast; for he declared that this most sweet name was like a honeycomb dissolving in the inmost recess of the soul;" and then he would exclaim:

"O most sweet name! O Mary, what must thou thyself be, since thy name alone is thus amiable and gracious!"

The enamoured St. Bernard, raising his heart to his good Mother, says with tenderness,
"O great! O pious! O thou who art worthy of all praise!
O most Holy Virgin Mary!
Thy name is so sweet and amiable, that it cannot be pronounced without inflaming those who do so with love towards thee and God.

It only need occur to the thought of thy lovers to move them to love thee more, and to console them."
"Thou canst not be named without inflaming; thou canst not be thought of by those who love thee without filling their minds with joy"
"And if riches comfort the poor, because they relieve them in their distress,
O how much more does thy name, O Mary," says Richard of St. Laurence, "comfort us than any earthly riches!
It comforts us in the anguishes of this life."
"Thy name, O Mary, is far better than riches, because it can better relieve poverty.

Thy most sweet name, O Mary, according to St. Ambrose, "is a precious ointment, which breathes forth the odor of divine grace."
The saint then prays to the divine Mother, saying:
"Let this ointment of salvation enter the inmost recesses of our souls"
that is, grant, O Lady, that we may often remember to name thee with love and confidence; for this practice either shows the possession of divine grace, or else is a pledge that we shall soon recover it.

"And truly it is so, O Mary; for the remembrance of thy name comforts the afflicted, recalls those who have erred to the way of salvation, and encourages sinners, that they may not abandon themselves to despair."

It is thus that Ludolph of Saxony addresses her ("O Mariae! Tui recordation nominis, moestos laetificat, errantes ad viam salutis revocat et peccatores, ne desperent, confortat"--Vita Chr. p. 2, c. 86).

Father Pelbart says, "that as Jesus Christ by his five wounds gave a remedy for the evils of the world, so also does Mary, by her most holy name which is composed of five letters, daily bring pardon to sinners"

For this reason is the holy name of Mary likened in the sacred canticles to oil: Thy name is as oil poured out ("Oleum effusum, nomen tuum"--Off. B. V. resp. 6).
On these words blessed Alan says that the glory of her name is compared to oil poured out; because oil heals the sick, sends out a sweet odor, and nourishes flames.
Thus also does the name of Mary heal sinners, rejoice hearts, and inflame them with divine love.

Hence Richard of St. Laurence "encourages sinners to have recourse to this great name," because it alone will suffice to cure them of all their evils; and "there is so disorder, however malignant, that does not immediately yield to the power of the name of Mary"

Cant. i. 2: "Thy name is as oil poured out"

In fine, "This admirable name of our Sovereign Lady," says Richard of St. Laurence, "is like a fortified tower, in which, if a sinner takes refuge, he will be delivered from death; for it depends and saves even the most abandoned"

He says, "there is not such powerful help in any name, nor is there any other name given to men, after that of Jesus, from which so much salvation is poured forth upon men as from the name of Mary."

The same author in his commentary on the words of St. Luke, and the Virgin's name was Mary ("Et nomen Virginis Maria"--Luke i. 27), remarks that these two words, Mary and Virgin, are joined together by the Evangelist, to denote that the name of this most pure Virgin should always be coupled with the virtue of chastity"

Hence St. Peter Chrysologus says, "that the name of Mary is an indication of chastity" ("Nomen hoc, indicium castitatis"--Serm. 146), meaning, that when we doubt as to whether we have consented to thoughts against this virtue, if we remember having invoked the name of Mary, we have a certain proof that we have not sinned.

"If then, O brethren," concludes Thomas ˆ Kempis, "you desire consolation in every labor, have recourse to Mary; invoke the name of Mary, honor Mary, recommend yourselves to Mary, rejoice with Mary, weep with Mary, pray with Mary, walk with Mary, seek Jesus with Mary; in fine, desire to live and die with Jesus and Mary.

By acting thus you will always advance in the ways of God, for Mary will most willingly pray for you, and the Son will most certainly grant all that his Mother asks.

"Blessed is the man who loves thy name, O Mary" , exclaims St. Bonaventure. "Yes, truly blessed is he who loves thy sweet name, O Mother of God! for," he continues, "thy name is so glorious and admirable, that no one who remembers it has any fears at the hour of death"
Such is its power, that none of those who invoke it at the hour of death fear the assaults of their enemies.

Let us then, O devout faithful, beg God to grant us, that at death the name of Mary may be the last word on our lips. This was the prayer of St. Germanus:
"May the last movement of my tongue be to pronounce the name of the Mother of God"

O sweet, O safe is that death which is accompanied and protected by so saving a name; for God only grants the grace of invoking it to those whom he is about to save.
O my sweet Lady and Mother, I love thee much, and because I love thee I also love thy holy name. I purpose and hope, with thy assistance, always to invoke it during life and at death.

And to conclude with the tender prayer of St. Bonaventure: "I ask thee, O Mary, for the glory of thy name, to come and meet my soul when it is departing from this world, and to take it in thine arms"
"Disdain not, O Mary," the saint continues, "to come then and comfort me with thy presence. Be thyself my soul's ladder and way to heaven.
Do thou thyself obtain for it the grace of forgiveness and eternal repose"

He then concludes saying, "O Mary, our advocate, it is for thee to defend thy clients, and to undertake their cause before the tribunal of Jesus Christ"

MARY, THE POWER OF HER NAME ON EARTH AND IN HEAVEN

Richard of St. Laurence states "there is not such powerful help in any name, nor is there any other name given to men, after that of Jesus, from which so much salvation is poured forth upon men as from the name of Mary."

He continues, "that the devout invocation of this sweet and holy name leads to the acquisition of superabundant graces in this life, and a very high degree of glory in the next life."

The Abbot Francone, speaking on this subject, says:
"there is no other name after that of the Son, in heaven or on earth, whence pious minds derive so much grace, hope, and sweetness."
After the most sacred name of Jesus, the name of Mary is so rich in every good thing, that on earth and in heaven there is no other from which devout souls receive so much grace, hope, and sweetness.

Hence Richard of St. Laurence "encourages sinners to have recourse to this great name," because it alone will suffice to cure them of all their evils;
and "there is no disorder, however malignant, that does not immediately yield to the power of the name of Mary."

The Blessed Raymond Jordano says:
"that however by very hardened and diffident a heart may be, the name of this most Blessed Virgin has such efficacy, that if it is only pronounced in heart or in thought will be wonderfully softened."

Moreover, it is well known, and is daily experienced by the faithful of Mary, that her powerful name gives the particular strength necessary to overcome temptations against purity.

In fine, "thy name, O Mother of God, is filled with divine graces and blessings," as St. Methodius says.

So much so, that St. Bonaventure declares:
"that thy name, O Mary, cannot be pronounced without bringing some grace to him who does so devoutly." . . .
Grant, O Lady, that we may often remember to name thee with love and confidence; for this practice either shows the possession of divine grace, or else is a pledge that we shall soon recover it.

On the other hand, Thomas a Kempis affirms:
"that the devils fear the Queen of heaven to such a degree, that only on hearing her name pronounced, they flee terrified as if it were a burning fire and consumes them".

The Blessed Virgin herself revealed to St. Bridget:
"that if a sinner is so far away from God, and devoid of all love, but if he only invokes the holy name of Mary with a determination to repent, the devil is obliged immediately to flee from him"

On another occasion she repeated the same thing to other saint, saying:
"that all the devils venerate and fear her name to such a degree, that on hearing it they immediately loosen their claws with which they hold to the souls captive."

Our Blessed Lady also told St. Bridget:
"that in the same way as the rebel angels flee from sinners who invoke the name of Mary, so also the good angels are approached more to the just souls who pronounce her name with devotion."

PROMISES OF HELP MADE BY JESUS TO ST. BRIDGET

Consoling indeed are the promises of help made by Jesus Christ to those who have devotion to the name of Mary; for one day in the hearing of St. Bridget, He promised His most holy Mother that He would grant three special graces to those who invoke that holy name with confidence:

first: that He would grant them perfect sorrow for their sins;

secondly: that all their crimes (sins) should be atoned for in this world; and,

thirdly: that He would give them strength to attain perfection, and at length the glory of paradise.

first: that He would grant them perfect sorrow for their sins;

secondly: that all their crimes (sins) should be atoned for in this world; and,

thirdly: that He would give them strength to attain perfection, and at length the glory of paradise.

first: that He would grant them perfect sorrow for their sins;

secondly: that all their crimes (sins) should be atoned for in this world; and,

thirdly: that He would give them strength to attain perfection, and at length the glory of paradise.

"For thy words, O My Mother, are so sweet and agreeable to Me, that I cannot deny what thou askest."

St. Ephrem goes so far as to say:
"that the name of Mary is the key of the gates of heaven," in the hands of those who devoutly invoke it.

And thus it is not without reason that St. Bonaventure says:
"that Mary is the salvation of all who call upon her."
"O most sweet name! O Mary, what must thou thyself be, since thy name alone is thus amiable and gracious," exclaims Blessed Henry Suso.

Let us, therefore, always take advantage of the beautiful advice given us by St. Bernard, in these words:
"In dangers, in perplexities, in doubtful cases, think of Mary, invokes Mary;
that thy lips always pronounce her name; let her not depart from thy heart."

NAMES OF JESUS AND MARY

In every danger of forfeiting divine grace, we should think of Mary, and invoke her name, together with that of Jesus; FOR THESE TWO NAMES ALWAYS GO TOGETHER.

O, then, never let us permit these two most sweet names to leave our hearts, or be off our lips; for they will give us strength not only not to yield, but to conquer all our temptations.

"The invocation of the sacred names of Jesus and Mary," says Thomas a Kempis:
"is a short prayer which is as sweet to the mind, and as powerful to protect those who use it against the enemies of their salvation, as it is easy to remember."
Let us remember that Sister Mary Consolata Bertrone also prayed the same prayer:

JESUS, MARY, I LOVE THEE, SAVE SOULS!

St. Camillus de Lellis urged the members of his community to remind the dying often to utter the holy names of Jesus and Mary.
Such was his custom when assisting people in their last hour.

When he himself came to die he gave an edifying example of confidence in the holy names.
His biographer relates that when death was approaching, the saint invoked the sweet names of Jesus and Mary with such tender devotion that all present were inflamed with love for the sacred names.
With his eyes fixed on the images of Jesus and Mary, and his arms crossed on his breast, an expression of heavenly peace rested on his face when his soul took its flight.
His last words were the sacred names of "Jesus and Mary".

THE HOUR OF OUR DEATH

Thus we see that the most holy name of Mary is sweet indeed for the faithful during life, on account of the very great graces that she obtains for them.
But sweeter still will it be to them in death, on account of the tranquil and holy end that it will insure them.

Let us then, O devout soul, beg God to grant us, that at death the name of Mary may be the last word on our lips.

This was the prayer of St. Germanus:
"May the last movement of my tongue be to pronounce the name of the Mother of God;" O sweet, O safe is that death which is accompanied and protected by so saying a name; for God only grants the grace of invoking it to those whom He is about to save!.

Father Sertorius Caputo, of the Society of Jesus, exhorted all who assist the dying frequently to pronounce the name of Mary; for this name of life and hope, when repeated at the hour of death, suffices to put the devils to flight, and to comfort such persons in their sufferings.

"Blessed is the man who loves thy name, O Mary" exclaims St. Bonaventure.

"Yes, truly blessed is he who loves thy sweet name, O Mother of God!," he continues:
"thy name is so glorious and admirable, that no one who remembers it has any fears at the hour of death."
Such is its power, that none of those who invoke it at the hour of death fear the infernal assaults of their enemies vanish as smoke.

St. Camillus de Lellis urged the members of his community to remind the dying often to utter the holy names of Jesus and Mary.
Such was his custom when assisting people in their last hour.

Oh, that we may end our lives as did the Capuchin Father, Fulgentius of Ascoli, who expired singing,
"O Mary, O Mary, the most beautiful of creatures! let us depart together."

Let us conclude with the tender prayer of St. Bonaventure:

"I ask thee, O Mary, for the glory of thy name, to come and meet my soul when it is departing from this world, and to take it in thine arms."

DEVOTION TO THE VIRGIN MARY IN THE FIRST CENTURIES

Recent Mariology studies have resulted in the Virgin Mary has been honored and revered as the Mother of God and Mother of us since the dawn of Christianity, from the early centuries, around the year 100.

An example of this is a painting on the wall of a catacombs of St. Priscilla, where we see a representation of the Virgin Mary.

In the first three centuries, ie almost to the year 400, the veneration of Mary is contained primarily within the worship of His Son Jesus Christ.

A Father of the Church summarizes the feelings of the primitive cult of Mary, referring to Mary with these words:
"The prophets and apostles announced with the highest praise, and also all generations will do."

From these early centuries only indirect evidence can be collected of Marian devotion. Among them are some archaeological remains in the catacombs, which demonstrate the worship and veneration, that the early Christians had for Mary.

Such is the case of Marian paintings of the catacombs of Priscilla: in one of them shows the Virgin surrounded with a halo on his head, with the Child Jesus to the chest and a prophet (Isaiah perhaps) aside, the other two represent the Annunciation and the Epiphany. All are from the late second century.

In the catacombs of St. Peter and St. Marcelino is also admires a painting of the century III / IV which shows Mary in the middle of St. Peter and St. Paul, with outstretched hands and praying.

A magnificent example of devotion to Mary is prayer "Sub tuum praesidium" (We fly to thy patronage) that goes back to the III-IV, in which we turn to the intercession of Mary.

Parents of the fourth century praise in many different ways to the Mother of God.
St. Epifanio, combating the error of a sect of Saudi where will be venerated the cult of latria to Mary, in a wrong way, after rejecting such a cult, writes: "Be honor Mary!, Be worshiped the Lord!".

The same distinction is seen in St. Ambrose who, after praising the "Mother of all virgins" is loud and clear, while, when he says that "Mary is the temple of God and not the God of the temple," to put in its true Marian devotion, professed as distinct from God.

There is evidence that in the time of Pope St. Sylvester, in the forum, where he had previously erected a temple to Vesta, whose avocation was built was a St. Mary of the Antique.
Likewise, Bishop Alexander of Alexandria consecrated a church in honor of the Mother of God.
We also know that in the Church of the Nativity in Palestine, dating back to the time of Constantine, by the worship of the Lord, Mary was honored by recalling the miraculous conception of Christ.

In the Eucharistic liturgy is reliable data showing that the mention of Mary venerated in the Eucharistic Prayer dates back to the year 225 and in the feasts of the Lord, Incarnation, Nativity and Epiphany, etc .- also the name of Mary is honored as the Mother of God.

Often noted that by the year 380 the first festival of Mary was instituted interchangeably called "Memory of the Mother of God," "Feast of the Blessed Virgin", or "Feast of the glorious Mother."

OTHER RELIGIOUS TRADITIONS

In Protestantism churches, veneration is sometimes considered to amount to the heresy of idolatry, and the related practice of canonization amounts to the heresy of apotheosis.

Protestant theology usually denies that any real distinction between veneration and worship can be made, and claims that the practice of veneration distracts the Christian soul from its true object, the worship of God.

In his Institutes of the Christian Religion, John Calvin writes that "(t)he distinction of what is called dulia and latria was invented for the very purpose of permitting divine honours to be paid to angels and dead men with apparent impunity."

Likewise, Islam also condemns any veneration of icons. The Hindu honoring of icons and murtis, often seen as idolatry, may also be looked upon as a kind of veneration.

In Green Christianity (or Creation-centered theology) animals, plants, and other parts of nature may be said to be venerated simply by taking good care of them, thereby showing honor and respect for God who made them.
Creation, being regarded as an icon of the Creator, is a valid object of veneration.

Philologically, to venerate derives from the Latin verb, venerare, meaning to regard with reverence and respect.

HYMN: TO BLESSED VIRGIN MARY

"The name of Mary is a tower of strength, which saves sinners from punishment,
and defends the just from the assaults of hell."--St. Laurence Justinian.

Mother Mary, Queen most sweet,
Joy and love my heart inflame;
Gladly shall my lips repeat
Every moment thy dear name.
Ah I that name to God so dear
Has my heart and soul enslaved;
Like a seal it shall appear
Deep on heart and soul engraved.

When the morning gilds the skies
I will call on Mary's name;
When as evening twilight dies,
Mary! still will I exclaim.
Sweetest Mary, bend thine ear,
Thou my own dear Mother art;
Therefore shall thy name so dear
Never from my lips depart.

If my soul is sore opprest
By a load of anxious care,
Peace once more will fill my breast
When thy name reechoes there.
Waves of doubt disturb my peace.
And my heart is faint with fear;
At thy name the billows cease,
All my terrors disappear.

When the demon hosts invade,
When temptation rages high,
Crying, "Mary, Mother, aid!"
I will make the tempter fly.
This shall be my comfort sweet,
When the hand of death is nigh,
Mary! Mary! to repeat
Once again,--and then to die.

LITANY OF THE HOLY NAME OF MARY

Lord, have mercy.

Lord, have mercy.

Christ, have mercy.

Christ, have mercy.

Lord, have mercy.

Lord, have mercy.

Son of Mary, hear us.

Son of Mary, graciously hear us.

Heavenly Father, of Whom Mary is the Daughter, Have mercy on us.
Eternal Word, of Whom Mary is the Mother, Have mercy on us.
Holy Spirit, of Whom Mary is the spouse, Have mercy on us.
Divine Trinity, of Whom Mary is the Handmaid, Have mercy on us.

Mary, Mother of the Living God, pray for us.**

Mary, daughter of the Light Eternal,**

Mary, our light,**

Mary, our sister,**

Mary, flower of Jesse,**

Mary, issue of kings,**

Mary, chief work of God,**

Mary, the beloved of God,**

Mary, Immaculate Virgin,**

Mary, all fair,**

Mary, light in darkness,**

Mary, our sure rest,**

Mary, house of God,**

Mary, sanctuary of the Lord,**

Mary, altar of the Divinity,**

Mary, Virgin Mother,**

Mary, embracing thy Infant God,**

Mary, reposing with Eternal Wisdom,**

Mary, ocean of bitterness,**

Mary, suffering with thine only Son,**

Mary, pierced with a sword of sorrow,**

Mary, torn with a cruel wound,**

Mary, sorrowful even to death,**

Mary, bereft of all consolation,**

Mary, submissive to the law of God,**

Mary, standing by the Cross of Jesus,**

Mary, Our Lady,**

Mary, Our Queen,**

Mary, Queen of glory ,**

Mary, glory of the Church Triumphant,**

Mary, Blessed Queen,**

Mary, advocate of the Church Militant,**

Mary, Queen of Mercy,**

Mary, consoler of the Church Suffering,**

Mary, exalted above the Angels,**

Mary, crowned with twelve stars,**

Mary, fair as the moon,**

Mary, bright as the sun,**

Mary, distinguished above all,**

Mary, seated at the right hand of Jesus,**

Mary, our hope,**

Mary, our sweetness,**

Mary, glory of Jerusalem,**

Mary, joy of Israel,**

Mary, honor of our people,**

Mary, Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception,**

Mary, Our Lady of the Assumption,**

Mary, Our Lady of Dolors,**

Mary, Our Lady of Mercy,**

Mary, Our Lady, Star of the sea,**

Mary, Our Lady of the Joy of Heaven,**

Mary, Our Lady of Victory,**

Mary, Our Lady of The Holy Rosary,**

Mary, Our Lady of Mount Carmel,**

Lamb of God, Who didst rejoice Mary,
Spare us, O Lord Jesus.

Lamb of God, Who didst afflict Mary,
Graciously hear us, O Lord Jesus.

Lamb of God, Who didst glorify Mary,
Have mercy on us, O Lord Jesus.

Son of Mary, hear us.
Son of Mary, graciously hear us.

V. I will declare thy name unto my brethren.
R. I will praise thee in the assembly of the faithful.

Let Us Pray:

O Almighty God, Who beholdest Thy servants earnestly desirous of placing themselves under the shadow of the name and protection of the Most Holy Virgin Mary;
vouchsafe, we beseech Thee, that by her charitable intercession, we may be delivered from all evil on earth, and may arrive at everlasting joys in Heaven.
Through Jesus Christ Our Lord. Amen.

(For private use only. We found no objection to make it known. Quite the contrary. It is full of beauty and devotion to Mary. We submit to all orders of the Holy Catholic Church.)

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