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Author Topic: Inaccurate Understanding of the Immaculate Conception  (Read 114576 times) Average Rating: 0
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Dan-Romania
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« Reply #90 on: April 08, 2009, 10:17:54 AM »

If Mary would not inherit the Ancestral Sin , she would not known corruption and death , and she would not needed a Saviour . Of course conforming Scriptures and Tradition she was Saved by God , trought Grace , The power of the Holy Spirit came upon her and washed away Her sin(s) . For this she was grateful and said : My heart rejoiced in God , my Saviour . So both Bible and Tradition "kind of" doesn`t support this dogma , and this dogma is not in the line with the Bible or Tradition . I wrote about this two in another topic "Regarding Immaculated Conception" it is more wide and largely into subject .
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« Reply #91 on: April 08, 2009, 10:23:34 AM »

Dearest Father Ambrose,

Seriously -- the fact that you do not actually read my response makes your claims lose all credibility.  I already stated, specifically, that the "stain" of original sin does not refer to any of the tactile effects of the Fall, but only to the spiritual effects.  I don't know how you can assume I claimed that death is not a consequence of the Fall.

Let me spell this out more slowly:

The Fall had two consequences for mankind - 1) tactile/physical effects which include bodily/emotional infirmities, corruption and death. 2) spiritual effects which include loss of sanctifying grace, loss of original justice, and concupiscence.

In the Decree on Original Sin at the Council of Trent, the Church defined that in Baptism, mankind is "made innocent, without stain, pure...beloved sons of God."

Do you see the word "stain" in the definition, Father?  Do you see the connection?  "Stain" refers to the SPIRITUAL consequences of original sin, NOT the physical/tactile consequences (unless your innovative polemics are now going to claim that the Catholic Church teaches that Baptism means we can no longer die).

So when the dogma of the IC states that Mary was preserved from all STAIN of original sin, it is referring exclusively to the SPIRITUAL consequences of original sin, and is not making any reference to the physical/tactile consequences.  In other words, the dogma of the IC is not claiming that the Graces Mary received at the moment of the Immaculate Conception somehow freed her from death, or physical/emotional infirmities, or bodily corruption, etc.

Your fine distinction in the IC are not found in Ineffibilus Deus.  Are they a refinement?
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SUPREME REASON FOR THE PRIVILEGE: THE DIVINE MATERNITY

And indeed it was wholly fitting that so wonderful a mother should be ever resplendent with the glory of most sublime holiness and so completely free from all taint of original sin that she would triumph utterly over the ancient serpent. To her did the Father will to give his only-begotten Son -- the Son whom, equal to the Father and begotten by him, the Father loves from his heart -- and to give this Son in such a way that he would be the one and the same common Son of God the Father and of the Blessed Virgin Mary. It was she whom the Son himself chose to make his Mother and it was from her that the Holy Spirit willed and brought it about that he should be conceived and born from whom he himself proceeds.[1]
Nice inclusion of the error of the Filioque.

This of course, is the supreme problem for your read of the IC:Mary becomes Theotokos through her body.

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The Fathers and writers of the Church, well versed in the heavenly Scriptures, had nothing more at heart than to vie with one another in preaching and teaching in many wonderful ways the Virgin's supreme sanctity, dignity, and immunity from all stain of sin, and her renowned victory over the most foul enemy of the human race. This they did in the books they wrote to explain the Scriptures, to vindicate the dogmas, and to instruct the faithful. These ecclesiastical writers in quoting the words by which at the beginning of the world God announced his merciful remedies prepared for the regeneration of mankind -- words by which he crushed the audacity of the deceitful serpent and wondrously raised up the hope of our race, saying, "I will put enmities between you and the woman, between your seed and her seed"[13] -- taught that by this divine prophecy the merciful Redeemer of mankind, Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God, was clearly foretold: That his most Blessed Mother, the Virgin Mary, was prophetically indicated; and, at the same time, the very enmity of both against the evil one was significantly expressed. Hence, just as Christ, the Mediator between God and man, assumed human nature, blotted the handwriting of the decree that stood against us, and fastened it triumphantly to the cross, so the most holy Virgin, united with him by a most intimate and indissoluble bond, was, with him and through him, eternally at enmity with the evil serpent, and most completely triumphed over him, and thus crushed his head with her immaculate foot.[14]

Based on the Vulgate's mistransaltion of Genesis 3:15 (something the IC believers by the score still ignore).

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As if these splendid eulogies and tributes were not sufficient, the Fathers proclaimed with particular and definite statements that when one treats of sin, the holy Virgin Mary is not even to be mentioned; for to her more grace was given than was necessary to conquer sin completely.[24] They also declared that the most glorious Virgin was Reparatrix of the first parents, the giver of life to posterity; that she was chosen before the ages, prepared for himself by the Most High, foretold by God when he said to the serpent, "I will put enmities between you and the woman."[25] -- unmistakable evidence that she crushed the poisonous head of the serpent. And hence they affirmed that the Blessed Virgin was, through grace, entirely free from every stain of sin, and from all corruption of body, soul and mind; that she was always united with God and joined to him by an eternal covenant; that she was never in darkness but always in light; and that, therefore, she was entirely a fit habitation for Christ, not because of the state of her body, but because of her original grace.


They testified, too, that the flesh of the Virgin, although derived from Adam, did not contract the stains of Adam, and that on this account the most Blessed Virgin was the tabernacle created by God himself and formed by the Holy Spirit, truly a work in royal purple, adorned and woven with gold, which that new Beseleel made. They affirmed that the same Virgin is, and is deservedly, the first and especial work of God, escaping the fiery arrows the evil one; that she is beautiful by nature and entirely free from all stain; that at her Immaculate Conception she came into the world all radiant like the dawn. For it was certainly not fitting that this vessel of election should be wounded by the common injuries, since she, differing so much from the others, had only nature in common with them, not sin. In fact, it was quite fitting that, as the Only-Begotten has a Father in heaven, whom the Seraphim extol as thrice holy, so he should have a Mother on earth who would never be without the splendor of holiness.

This doctrine so filled the minds and souls of our ancestors in the faith that a singular and truly marvelous style of speech came into vogue among them. They have frequently addressed the Mother of God as immaculate, as immaculate in every respect; innocent, and verily most innocent; spotless, and entirely spotless; holy and removed from every stain of sin; all pure, all stainless, the very model of purity and innocence; more beautiful than beauty, more lovely than loveliness; more holy than holiness, singularly holy and most pure in soul and body; the one who surpassed all integrity and virginity; the only one who has become the dwelling place of all the graces of the most Holy Spirit. God alone excepted, Mary is more excellent than all, and by nature fair and beautiful, and more holy than the Cherubim and Seraphim. To praise her all the tongues of heaven and earth do not suffice.

And then, there is the problem of squaring your read of the IC with Munificentissimus Deus:
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3. Actually God, who from all eternity regards Mary with a most favorable and unique affection, has "when the fullness of time came"(2) put the plan of his providence into effect in such a way that all the privileges and prerogatives he had granted to her in his sovereign generosity were to shine forth in her in a kind of perfect harmony. And, although the Church has always recognized this supreme generosity and the perfect harmony of graces and has daily studied them more and more throughout the course of the centuries, still it is in our own age that the privilege of the bodily Assumption into heaven of Mary, the Virgin Mother of God, has certainly shone forth more clearly.

4. That privilege has shone forth in new radiance since our predecessor of immortal memory, Pius IX, solemnly proclaimed the dogma of the loving Mother of God's Immaculate Conception. These two privileges are most closely bound to one another. Christ overcame sin and death by his own death, and one who through Baptism has been born again in a supernatural way has conquered sin and death through the same Christ. Yet, according to the general rule, God does not will to grant to the just the full effect of the victory over death until the end of time has come. And so it is that the bodies of even the just are corrupted after death, and only on the last day will they be joined, each to its own glorious soul.

5. Now God has willed that the Blessed Virgin Mary should be exempted from this general rule. She, by an entirely unique privilege, completely overcame sin by her Immaculate Conception, and as a result she was not subject to the law of remaining in the corruption of the grave, and she did not have to wait until the end of time for the redemption of her body.

6. Thus, when it was solemnly proclaimed that Mary, the Virgin Mother of God, was from the very beginning free from the taint of original sin, the minds of the faithful were filled with a stronger hope that the day might soon come when the dogma of the Virgin Mary's bodily Assumption into heaven would also be defined by the Church's supreme teaching authority.

12. But those whom "the Holy Spirit has placed as bishops to rule the Church of God"(4) gave an almost unanimous affirmative response to both these questions. This "outstanding agreement of the Catholic prelates and the faithful,"(5) affirming that the bodily Assumption of God's Mother into heaven can be defined as a dogma of faith, since it shows us the concordant teaching of the Church's ordinary doctrinal authority and the concordant faith of the Christian people which the same doctrinal authority sustains and directs, thus by itself and in an entirely certain and infallible way, manifests this privilege as a truth revealed by God and contained in that divine deposit which Christ has delivered to his Spouse to be guarded faithfully and to be taught infallibly.(6) Certainly this teaching authority of the Church, not by any merely human effort but under the protection of the Spirit of Truth,(7) and therefore absolutely without error, carries out the commission entrusted to it, that of preserving the revealed truths pure and entire throughout every age, in such a way that it presents them undefiled, adding nothing to them and taking nothing away from them. For, as the Vatican Council teaches, "the Holy Spirit was not promised to the successors of Peter in such a way that, by his revelation, they might manifest new doctrine, but so that, by his assistance, they might guard as sacred and might faithfully propose the revelation delivered through the apostles, or the deposit of faith."(Cool Thus, from the universal agreement of the Church's ordinary teaching authority we have a certain and firm proof, demonstrating that the Blessed Virgin Mary's bodily Assumption into heaven- which surely no faculty of the human mind could know by its own natural powers, as far as the heavenly glorification of the virginal body of the loving Mother of God is concerned-is a truth that has been revealed by God and consequently something that must be firmly and faithfully believed by all children of the Church. For, as the Vatican Council asserts, "all those things are to be believed by divine and Catholic faith which are contained in the written Word of God or in Tradition, and which are proposed by the Church, either in solemn judgment or in its ordinary and universal teaching office, as divinely revealed truths which must be believed."(9)

14. Christ's faithful, through the teaching and the leadership of their pastors, have learned from the sacred books that the Virgin Mary, throughout the course of her earthly pilgrimage, led a life troubled by cares, hardships, and sorrows, and that, moreover, what the holy old man Simeon had foretold actually came to pass, that is, that a terribly sharp sword pierced her heart as she stood under the cross of her divine Son, our Redeemer. In the same way, it was not difficult for them to admit that the great Mother of God, like her only begotten Son, had actually passed from this life. But this in no way prevented them from believing and from professing openly that her sacred body had never been subject to the corruption of the tomb, and that the august tabernacle of the Divine Word had never been reduced to dust and ashes. Actually, enlightened by divine grace and moved by affection for her, God's Mother and our own dearest Mother, they have contemplated in an ever clearer light the wonderful harmony and order of those privileges which the most provident God has lavished upon this loving associate of our Redeemer, privileges which reach such an exalted plane that, except for her, nothing created by God other than the human nature of Jesus Christ has ever reached this level.

17. In the liturgical books which deal with the feast either of the dormition or of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin there are expressions that agree in testifying that, when the Virgin Mother of God passed from this earthly exile to heaven, what happened to her sacred body was, by the decree of divine Providence, in keeping with the dignity of the Mother of the Word Incarnate, and with the other privileges she had been accorded. Thus, to cite an illustrious example, this is set forth in that sacramentary which Adrian I, our predecessor of immortal memory, sent to the Emperor Charlemagne. These words are found in this volume: "Venerable to us, O Lord, is the festivity of this day on which the holy Mother of God suffered temporal death, but still could not be kept down by the bonds of death, who has begotten your Son our Lord incarnate from herself."(11)

18. What is here indicated in that sobriety characteristic of the Roman liturgy is presented more clearly and completely in other ancient liturgical books. To take one as an example, the Gallican sacramentary designates this privilege of Mary's as "an ineffable mystery all the more worthy of praise as the Virgin's Assumption is something unique among men." And, in the Byzantine liturgy, not only is the Virgin Mary's bodily Assumption connected time and time again with the dignity of the Mother of God, but also with the other privileges, and in particular with the virginal motherhood granted her by a singular decree of God's Providence. "God, the King of the universe, has granted you favors that surpass nature. As he kept you a virgin in childbirth, thus he has kept your body incorrupt in the tomb and has glorified it by his divine act of transferring it from the tomb."(12)

20. However, since the liturgy of the Church does not engender the Catholic faith, but rather springs from it, in such a way that the practices of the sacred worship proceed from the faith as the fruit comes from the tree, it follows that the holy Fathers and the great Doctors, in the homilies and sermons they gave the people on this feast day, did not draw their teaching from the feast itself as from a primary source, but rather they spoke of this doctrine as something already known and accepted by Christ's faithful. They presented it more clearly. They offered more profound explanations of its meaning and nature, bringing out into sharper light the fact that this feast shows, not only that the dead body of the Blessed Virgin Mary remained incorrupt, but that she gained a triumph out of death, her heavenly glorification after the example of her only begotten Son, Jesus Christ-truths that the liturgical books had frequently touched upon concisely and briefly.

21. Thus St. John Damascene, an outstanding herald of this traditional truth, spoke out with powerful eloquence when he compared the bodily Assumption of the loving Mother of God with her other prerogatives and privileges. "It was fitting that she, who had kept her virginity intact in childbirth, should keep her own body free from all corruption even after death. It was fitting that she, who had carried the Creator as a child at her breast, should dwell in the divine tabernacles. It was fitting that the spouse, whom the Father had taken to himself, should live in the divine mansions. It was fitting that she, who had seen her Son upon the cross and who had thereby received into her heart the sword of sorrow which she had escaped in the act of giving birth to him, should look upon him as he sits with the Father. It was fitting that God's Mother should possess what belongs to her Son, and that she should be honored by every creature as the Mother and as the handmaid of God."(17)

22. These words of St. John Damascene agree perfectly with what others have taught on this same subject. Statements no less clear and accurate are to be found in sermons delivered by Fathers of an earlier time or of the same period, particularly on the occasion of this feast. And so, to cite some other examples, St. Germanus of Constantinople considered the fact that the body of Mary, the virgin Mother of God, was incorrupt and had been taken up into heaven to be in keeping, not only with her divine motherhood, but also with the special holiness of her virginal body. "You are she who, as it is written, appears in beauty, and your virginal body is all holy, all chaste, entirely the dwelling place of God, so that it is henceforth completely exempt from dissolution into dust. Though still human, it is changed into the heavenly life of incorruptibility, truly living and glorious, undamaged and sharing in perfect life."(18) And another very ancient writer asserts: "As the most glorious Mother of Christ, our Savior and God and the giver of life and immortality, has been endowed with life by him, she has received an eternal incorruptibility of the body together with him who has raised her up from the tomb and has taken her up to himself in a way known only to him."(19)

26. Often there are theologians and preachers who, following in the footsteps of the holy Fathers,(20) have been rather free in their use of events and expressions taken from Sacred Scripture to explain their belief in the Assumption. Thus, to mention only a few of the texts rather frequently cited in this fashion, some have employed the words of the psalmist: "Arise, O Lord, into your resting place: you and the ark, which you have sanctified"(21); and have looked upon the Ark of the Covenant, built of incorruptible wood and placed in the Lord's temple, as a type of the most pure body of the Virgin Mary, preserved and exempt from all the corruption of the tomb and raised up to such glory in heaven. Treating of this subject, they also describe her as the Queen entering triumphantly into the royal halls of heaven and sitting at the right hand of the divine Redeemer.(22) Likewise they mention the Spouse of the Canticles "that goes up by the desert, as a pillar of smoke of aromatical spices, of myrrh and frankincense" to be crowned.(23) These are proposed as depicting that heavenly Queen and heavenly Spouse who has been lifted up to the courts of heaven with the divine Bridegroom.

28. Thus, during the earliest period of scholastic theology, that most pious man, Amadeus, Bishop of Lausarme, held that the Virgin Mary's flesh had remained incorrupt-for it is wrong to believe that her body has seen corruption-because it was really united again to her soul and, together with it, crowned with great glory in the heavenly courts. "For she was full of grace and blessed among women. She alone merited to conceive the true God of true God, whom as a virgin, she brought forth, to whom as a virgin she gave milk, fondling him in her lap, and in all things she waited upon him with loving care."(26)

29. Among the holy writers who at that time employed statements and various images and analogies of Sacred Scripture to Illustrate and to confirm the doctrine of the Assumption, which was piously believed, the Evangelical Doctor, St. Anthony of Padua, holds a special place. On the feast day of the Assumption, while explaining the prophet's words: "I will glorify the place of my feet,"(27) he stated it as certain that the divine Redeemer had bedecked with supreme glory his most beloved Mother from whom he had received human flesh. He asserts that "you have here a clear statement that the Blessed Virgin has been assumed in her body, where was the place of the Lord's feet. Hence it is that the holy Psalmist writes: 'Arise, O Lord, into your resting place: you and the ark which you have sanctified."' And he asserts that, just as Jesus Christ has risen from the death over which he triumphed and has ascended to the right hand of the Father, so likewise the ark of his sanctification "has risen up, since on this day the Virgin Mother has been taken up to her heavenly dwelling."(28)

30. When, during the Middle Ages, scholastic theology was especially flourishing, St. Albert the Great who, to establish this teaching, had gathered together many proofs from Sacred Scripture, from the statements of older writers, and finally from the liturgy and from what is known as theological reasoning, concluded in this way: "From these proofs and authorities and from many others, it is manifest that the most blessed Mother of God has been assumed above the choirs of angels. And this we believe in every way to be true."(29) And, in a sermon which he delivered on the sacred day of the Blessed Virgin Mary's annunciation, explained the words "Hail, full of grace"-words used by the angel who addressed her-the Universal Doctor, comparing the Blessed Virgin with Eve, stated clearly and incisively that she was exempted from the fourfold curse that had been laid upon Eve.(30)

31. Following the footsteps of his distinguished teacher, the Angelic Doctor, despite the fact that he never dealt directly with this question, nevertheless, whenever he touched upon it, always held together with the Catholic Church, that Mary's body had been assumed into heaven along with her soul.(31)

32. Along with many others, the Seraphic Doctor held the same views. He considered it as entirely certain that, as God had preserved the most holy Virgin Mary from the violation of her virginal purity and integrity in conceiving and in childbirth, he would never have permitted her body to have been resolved into dust and ashes.(32) Explaining these words of Sacred Scripture: "Who is this that comes up from the desert, flowing with delights, leaning upon her beloved?"(33) and applying them in a kind of accommodated sense to the Blessed Virgin, he reasons thus: "From this we can see that she is there bodily...her blessedness would not have been complete unless she were there as a person. The soul is not a person, but the soul, joined to the body, is a person. It is manifest that she is there in soul and in body. Otherwise she would not possess her complete beatitude.(34)

33. In the fifteenth century, during a later period of scholastic theology, St. Bernardine of Siena collected and diligently evaluated all that the medieval theologians had said and taught on this question. He was not content with setting down the principal considerations which these writers of an earlier day had already expressed, but he added others of his own. The likeness between God's Mother and her divine Son, in the way of the nobility and dignity of body and of soul - a likeness that forbids us to think of the heavenly Queen as being separated from the heavenly King - makes it entirely imperative that Mary "should be only where Christ is."(35) Moreover, it is reasonable and fitting that not only the soul and body of a man, but also the soul and body of a woman should have obtained heavenly glory. Finally, since the Church has never looked for the bodily relics of the Blessed Virgin nor proposed them for the veneration of the people, we have a proof on the order of a sensible experience.(36)

34. The above-mentioned teachings of the holy Fathers and of the Doctors have been in common use during more recent times. Gathering together the testimonies of the Christians of earlier days, St. Robert Bellarmine exclaimed: "And who, I ask, could believe that the ark of holiness, the dwelling place of the Word of God, the temple of the Holy Spirit, could be reduced to ruin? My soul is filled with horror at the thought that this virginal flesh which had begotten God, had brought him into the world, had nourished and carried him, could have been turned into ashes or given over to be food for worms."(37)

35. In like manner St. Francis de Sales, after asserting that it is wrong to doubt that Jesus Christ has himself observed, in the most perfect way, the divine commandment by which children are ordered to honor their parents, asks this question: "What son would not bring his mother back to life and would not bring her into paradise after her death if he could?"(38) And St. Alphonsus writes that "Jesus did not wish to have the body of Mary corrupted after death, since it would have redounded to his own dishonor to have her virginal flesh, from which he himself had assumed flesh, reduced to dust."(39)

36. Once the mystery which is commemorated in this feast had been placed in its proper light, there were not lacking teachers who, instead of dealing with the theological reasonings that show why it is fitting and right to believe the bodily Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary into heaven, chose to focus their mind and attention on the faith of the Church itself, which is the Mystical Body of Christ without stain or wrinkle(40) and is called by the Apostle "the pillar and ground of truth."(41) Relying on this common faith, they considered the teaching opposed to the doctrine of our Lady's Assumption as temerarious, if not heretical. Thus, like not a few others, St. Peter Canisius, after he had declared that the very word "assumption" signifies the glorification, not only of the soul but also of the body, and that the Church has venerated and has solemnly celebrated this mystery of Mary's Assumption for many centuries, adds these words of warning: "This teaching has already been accepted for some centuries, it has been held as certain in the minds of the pious people, and it has been taught to the entire Church in such a way that those who deny that Mary's body has been assumed into heaven are not to be listened to patiently but are everywhere to be denounced as over-contentious or rash men, and as imbued with a spirit that is heretical rather than Catholic."(42)

37. At the same time the great Suarez was professing in the field of mariology the norm that "keeping in mind the standards of propriety, and when there is no contradiction or repugnance on the part of Scripture, the mysteries of grace which God has wrought in the Virgin must be measured, not by the ordinary laws, but by the divine omnipotence."(43) Supported by the common faith of the entire Church on the subject of the mystery of the Assumption, he could conclude that this mystery was to be believed with the same firmness of assent as that given to the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin. Thus he already held that such truths could be defined.

38. All these proofs and considerations of the holy Fathers and the theologians are based upon the Sacred Writings as their ultimate foundation. These set the loving Mother of God as it were before our very eyes as most intimately joined to her divine Son and as always sharing his lot. Consequently it seems impossible to think of her, the one who conceived Christ, brought him forth, nursed him with her milk, held him in her arms, and clasped him to her breast, as being apart from him in body, even though not in soul, after this earthly life. Since our Redeemer is the Son of Mary, he could not do otherwise, as the perfect observer of God's law, than to honor, not only his eternal Father, but also his most beloved Mother. And, since it was within his power to grant her this great honor, to preserve her from the corruption of the tomb, we must believe that he really acted in this way.

potuit, decuit ergo fecit all over again.

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39. We must remember especially that, since the second century, the Virgin Mary has been designated by the holy Fathers as the new Eve, who, although subject to the new Adam, is most intimately associated with him in that struggle against the infernal foe which, as foretold in the protoevangelium,(44) would finally result in that most complete victory over the sin and death which are always mentioned together in the writings of the Apostle of the Gentiles.(45) Consequently, just as the glorious resurrection of Christ was an essential part and the final sign of this victory, so that struggle which was common to the Blessed Virgin and her divine Son should be brought to a close by the glorification of her virginal body, for the same Apostle says: "When this mortal thing hath put on immortality, then shall come to pass the saying that is written: Death is swallowed up in victory."(46)

40. Hence the revered Mother of God, from all eternity joined in a hidden way with Jesus Christ in one and the same decree of predestination,(47) immaculate in her conception, a most perfect virgin in her divine motherhood, the noble associate of the divine Redeemer who has won a complete triumph over sin and its consequences, finally obtained, as the supreme culmination of her privileges, that she should be preserved free from the corruption of the tomb and that, like her own Son, having overcome death, she might be taken up body and soul to the glory of heaven where, as Queen, she sits in splendor at the right hand of her Son, the immortal King of the Ages.(48)
44. For which reason, after we have poured forth prayers of supplication again and again to God, and have invoked the light of the Spirit of Truth, for the glory of Almighty God who has lavished his special affection upon the Virgin Mary, for the honor of her Son, the immortal King of the Ages and the Victor over sin and death, for the increase of the glory of that same august Mother, and for the joy and exultation of the entire Church; by the authority of our Lord Jesus Christ, of the Blessed Apostles Peter and Paul, and by our own authority, we pronounce, declare, and define it to be a divinely revealed dogma: that the Immaculate Mother of God, the ever Virgin Mary, having completed the course of her earthly life, was assumed body and soul into heavenly glory.
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ialmisry
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« Reply #92 on: April 08, 2009, 10:33:54 AM »

Second, I believe her death was truely a "dormition" hardly a death at all. So much so that she fell asleep then found her self in heaven. Not like our death.


It's hard to see how her death can be disputed by Roman Catholics
considering the words of Pope Pius XII in the very document by which he
dogmatically defined the Assumption.

It would, btw, be quite impossible for Eastern Catholics not to believe that
the Mother of God died without doing an act of violence to their own sacred
Tradition. The iconography, the hymnography and the oral Tradition all teach
that she did in fact die.

People like to say that the Apostolic Constitution "Munificentissimus Deus"
by which Pope Pius XII established the dogma of the Assumption in 1950 makes
no mention of whether Mary died or did not die.

This is inaccurate. One only has to read the document to see that the Pope
believed that she died. For example, he says:

"Thus, to cite an illustrious example, this is set forth in that
sacramentary which Adrian I, our predecessor of immortal memory, sent to the
Emperor Charlemagne. These words are found in this volume: "Venerable to us,
O Lord, is the festivity of this day on which the holy Mother of God
suffered temporal death, but still could not be kept down by the bonds of
death, who has begotten your Son our Lord incarnate from herself."

and

"As he kept you a virgin in childbirth, thus he has kept your body incorrupt
in the tomb and has glorified it by his divine act of transferring it from
the tomb."

and

"They offered more profound explanations of its meaning and nature, bringing
out into sharper light the fact that this feast shows, not only that the
dead body of the Blessed Virgin Mary remained incorrupt.."

and

"she has received an eternal incorruptibility of the body together with him
who has raised her up from the tomb.."

and

"What son would not bring his mother back to life and would not bring her
into paradise after her death if he could?"

These quotes from the papal document defining the Assumption are proof that
the Pope taught that Mary died and was buried in a tomb and from there she
was resurrected by her Son.

_________________________________
"MUNIFICENTISSIMUS DEUS" Pope Pius XII
http://www.ewtn.com/library/PAPALDOC/P12MUNIF.HTM

-oOo-



Ah but Father, we have that problem with having the Vatican folk stating what exactly is infallible.  I've see it argued that out of the 48 paragraphs of the Constitituion, only the bold faced is infallible:
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44. For which reason, after we have poured forth prayers of supplication again and again to God, and have invoked the light of the Spirit of Truth, for the glory of Almighty God who has lavished his special affection upon the Virgin Mary, for the honor of her Son, the immortal King of the Ages and the Victor over sin and death, for the increase of the glory of that same august Mother, and for the joy and exultation of the entire Church; by the authority of our Lord Jesus Christ, of the Blessed Apostles Peter and Paul, and by our own authority, we pronounce, declare, and define it to be a divinely revealed dogma: that the Immaculate Mother of God, the ever Virgin Mary, having completed the course of her earthly life, was assumed body and soul into heavenly glory.

45. Hence if anyone, which God forbid, should dare willfully to deny or to call into doubt that which we have defined, let him know that he has fallen away completely from the divine and Catholic Faith

Hence the Immortalists continue the Ultramontanist tradition of ignoring the plain text to cherry pick their proof texts.

Btw, can you post again the quotes of Maximillian Kolbe's ideas on the Theotokos.  That might be a good context to see what the IC leads to (and before anyone complains, look at what the IC and Assumption says as to the proof that these "dogmas" are the natural result of X, Y and Z pronouncement).
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« Reply #93 on: April 08, 2009, 10:39:31 AM »

If Mary would not inherit the Ancestral Sin , she would not known corruption and death ,
Why not? Jesus had no sin yet he died. Further, Mary could have died since her life was in completely conformity that of her divine son who died. Also, if Christ died, how could Mary not? A servant is not greater than her master. Finally, I do not believe that Mary's death was like our death. I believe that it was a true dormition, a falling asleep, such a gentle thing that upon her dormition she awoke in heaven. Original Sin is not required in any of this.
and she would not needed a Saviour .
Not true. A person can be saved from something happening, or can be saved from it after it happens. Imagine a hole in the forest that is hard to see. Imagine that a person falls in and I pull him out. I have saved the person after the fact. Imagine that I stop a person from falling in a whole who is just about to step in. The second person I have saved before the event. Mary is like the second person. She was saved before she fell into the whole of sin. Thus, even with the IC, Jesus is her savior.
Of course conforming Scriptures and Tradition she was Saved by God , trought Grace , The power of the Holy Spirit came upon her and washed away Her sin(s) . For this she was grateful and said : My heart rejoiced in God , my Saviour . So both Bible and Tradition "kind of" doesn`t support this dogma , and this dogma is not in the line with the Bible or Tradition . I wrote about this two in another topic "Regarding Immaculated Conception" it is more wide and largely into subject .
So you believe Mary was a sinner? You don't believe that she was "All Holy" as the Liturgy teaches?
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« Reply #94 on: April 08, 2009, 10:41:29 AM »

Dearest Father Ambrose,

Seriously -- the fact that you do not actually read my response makes your claims lose all credibility.  I already stated, specifically, that the "stain" of original sin does not refer to any of the tactile effects of the Fall, but only to the spiritual effects.  I don't know how you can assume I claimed that death is not a consequence of the Fall.

Let me spell this out more slowly:

The Fall had two consequences for mankind - 1) tactile/physical effects which include bodily/emotional infirmities, corruption and death. 2) spiritual effects which include loss of sanctifying grace, loss of original justice, and concupiscence.

In the Decree on Original Sin at the Council of Trent, the Church defined that in Baptism, mankind is "made innocent, without stain, pure...beloved sons of God."

Do you see the word "stain" in the definition, Father?  Do you see the connection?  "Stain" refers to the SPIRITUAL consequences of original sin, NOT the physical/tactile consequences (unless your innovative polemics are now going to claim that the Catholic Church teaches that Baptism means we can no longer die).

So when the dogma of the IC states that Mary was preserved from all STAIN of original sin, it is referring exclusively to the SPIRITUAL consequences of original sin, and is not making any reference to the physical/tactile consequences.  In other words, the dogma of the IC is not claiming that the Graces Mary received at the moment of the Immaculate Conception somehow freed her from death, or physical/emotional infirmities, or bodily corruption, etc.

Your fine distinction in the IC are not found in Ineffibilus Deus.  Are they a refinement?
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SUPREME REASON FOR THE PRIVILEGE: THE DIVINE MATERNITY

And indeed it was wholly fitting that so wonderful a mother should be ever resplendent with the glory of most sublime holiness and so completely free from all taint of original sin that she would triumph utterly over the ancient serpent. To her did the Father will to give his only-begotten Son -- the Son whom, equal to the Father and begotten by him, the Father loves from his heart -- and to give this Son in such a way that he would be the one and the same common Son of God the Father and of the Blessed Virgin Mary. It was she whom the Son himself chose to make his Mother and it was from her that the Holy Spirit willed and brought it about that he should be conceived and born from whom he himself proceeds.[1]
Nice inclusion of the error of the Filioque.

This of course, is the supreme problem for your read of the IC:Mary becomes Theotokos through her body.

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The Fathers and writers of the Church, well versed in the heavenly Scriptures, had nothing more at heart than to vie with one another in preaching and teaching in many wonderful ways the Virgin's supreme sanctity, dignity, and immunity from all stain of sin, and her renowned victory over the most foul enemy of the human race. This they did in the books they wrote to explain the Scriptures, to vindicate the dogmas, and to instruct the faithful. These ecclesiastical writers in quoting the words by which at the beginning of the world God announced his merciful remedies prepared for the regeneration of mankind -- words by which he crushed the audacity of the deceitful serpent and wondrously raised up the hope of our race, saying, "I will put enmities between you and the woman, between your seed and her seed"[13] -- taught that by this divine prophecy the merciful Redeemer of mankind, Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God, was clearly foretold: That his most Blessed Mother, the Virgin Mary, was prophetically indicated; and, at the same time, the very enmity of both against the evil one was significantly expressed. Hence, just as Christ, the Mediator between God and man, assumed human nature, blotted the handwriting of the decree that stood against us, and fastened it triumphantly to the cross, so the most holy Virgin, united with him by a most intimate and indissoluble bond, was, with him and through him, eternally at enmity with the evil serpent, and most completely triumphed over him, and thus crushed his head with her immaculate foot.[14]

Based on the Vulgate's mistransaltion of Genesis 3:15 (something the IC believers by the score still ignore).

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As if these splendid eulogies and tributes were not sufficient, the Fathers proclaimed with particular and definite statements that when one treats of sin, the holy Virgin Mary is not even to be mentioned; for to her more grace was given than was necessary to conquer sin completely.[24] They also declared that the most glorious Virgin was Reparatrix of the first parents, the giver of life to posterity; that she was chosen before the ages, prepared for himself by the Most High, foretold by God when he said to the serpent, "I will put enmities between you and the woman."[25] -- unmistakable evidence that she crushed the poisonous head of the serpent. And hence they affirmed that the Blessed Virgin was, through grace, entirely free from every stain of sin, and from all corruption of body, soul and mind; that she was always united with God and joined to him by an eternal covenant; that she was never in darkness but always in light; and that, therefore, she was entirely a fit habitation for Christ, not because of the state of her body, but because of her original grace.


They testified, too, that the flesh of the Virgin, although derived from Adam, did not contract the stains of Adam, and that on this account the most Blessed Virgin was the tabernacle created by God himself and formed by the Holy Spirit, truly a work in royal purple, adorned and woven with gold, which that new Beseleel made. They affirmed that the same Virgin is, and is deservedly, the first and especial work of God, escaping the fiery arrows the evil one; that she is beautiful by nature and entirely free from all stain; that at her Immaculate Conception she came into the world all radiant like the dawn. For it was certainly not fitting that this vessel of election should be wounded by the common injuries, since she, differing so much from the others, had only nature in common with them, not sin. In fact, it was quite fitting that, as the Only-Begotten has a Father in heaven, whom the Seraphim extol as thrice holy, so he should have a Mother on earth who would never be without the splendor of holiness.

This doctrine so filled the minds and souls of our ancestors in the faith that a singular and truly marvelous style of speech came into vogue among them. They have frequently addressed the Mother of God as immaculate, as immaculate in every respect; innocent, and verily most innocent; spotless, and entirely spotless; holy and removed from every stain of sin; all pure, all stainless, the very model of purity and innocence; more beautiful than beauty, more lovely than loveliness; more holy than holiness, singularly holy and most pure in soul and body; the one who surpassed all integrity and virginity; the only one who has become the dwelling place of all the graces of the most Holy Spirit. God alone excepted, Mary is more excellent than all, and by nature fair and beautiful, and more holy than the Cherubim and Seraphim. To praise her all the tongues of heaven and earth do not suffice.

And then, there is the problem of squaring your read of the IC with Munificentissimus Deus:
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3. Actually God, who from all eternity regards Mary with a most favorable and unique affection, has "when the fullness of time came"(2) put the plan of his providence into effect in such a way that all the privileges and prerogatives he had granted to her in his sovereign generosity were to shine forth in her in a kind of perfect harmony. And, although the Church has always recognized this supreme generosity and the perfect harmony of graces and has daily studied them more and more throughout the course of the centuries, still it is in our own age that the privilege of the bodily Assumption into heaven of Mary, the Virgin Mother of God, has certainly shone forth more clearly.

4. That privilege has shone forth in new radiance since our predecessor of immortal memory, Pius IX, solemnly proclaimed the dogma of the loving Mother of God's Immaculate Conception. These two privileges are most closely bound to one another. Christ overcame sin and death by his own death, and one who through Baptism has been born again in a supernatural way has conquered sin and death through the same Christ. Yet, according to the general rule, God does not will to grant to the just the full effect of the victory over death until the end of time has come. And so it is that the bodies of even the just are corrupted after death, and only on the last day will they be joined, each to its own glorious soul.

5. Now God has willed that the Blessed Virgin Mary should be exempted from this general rule. She, by an entirely unique privilege, completely overcame sin by her Immaculate Conception, and as a result she was not subject to the law of remaining in the corruption of the grave, and she did not have to wait until the end of time for the redemption of her body.

6. Thus, when it was solemnly proclaimed that Mary, the Virgin Mother of God, was from the very beginning free from the taint of original sin, the minds of the faithful were filled with a stronger hope that the day might soon come when the dogma of the Virgin Mary's bodily Assumption into heaven would also be defined by the Church's supreme teaching authority.

12. But those whom "the Holy Spirit has placed as bishops to rule the Church of God"(4) gave an almost unanimous affirmative response to both these questions. This "outstanding agreement of the Catholic prelates and the faithful,"(5) affirming that the bodily Assumption of God's Mother into heaven can be defined as a dogma of faith, since it shows us the concordant teaching of the Church's ordinary doctrinal authority and the concordant faith of the Christian people which the same doctrinal authority sustains and directs, thus by itself and in an entirely certain and infallible way, manifests this privilege as a truth revealed by God and contained in that divine deposit which Christ has delivered to his Spouse to be guarded faithfully and to be taught infallibly.(6) Certainly this teaching authority of the Church, not by any merely human effort but under the protection of the Spirit of Truth,(7) and therefore absolutely without error, carries out the commission entrusted to it, that of preserving the revealed truths pure and entire throughout every age, in such a way that it presents them undefiled, adding nothing to them and taking nothing away from them. For, as the Vatican Council teaches, "the Holy Spirit was not promised to the successors of Peter in such a way that, by his revelation, they might manifest new doctrine, but so that, by his assistance, they might guard as sacred and might faithfully propose the revelation delivered through the apostles, or the deposit of faith."(Cool Thus, from the universal agreement of the Church's ordinary teaching authority we have a certain and firm proof, demonstrating that the Blessed Virgin Mary's bodily Assumption into heaven- which surely no faculty of the human mind could know by its own natural powers, as far as the heavenly glorification of the virginal body of the loving Mother of God is concerned-is a truth that has been revealed by God and consequently something that must be firmly and faithfully believed by all children of the Church. For, as the Vatican Council asserts, "all those things are to be believed by divine and Catholic faith which are contained in the written Word of God or in Tradition, and which are proposed by the Church, either in solemn judgment or in its ordinary and universal teaching office, as divinely revealed truths which must be believed."(9)

14. Christ's faithful, through the teaching and the leadership of their pastors, have learned from the sacred books that the Virgin Mary, throughout the course of her earthly pilgrimage, led a life troubled by cares, hardships, and sorrows, and that, moreover, what the holy old man Simeon had foretold actually came to pass, that is, that a terribly sharp sword pierced her heart as she stood under the cross of her divine Son, our Redeemer. In the same way, it was not difficult for them to admit that the great Mother of God, like her only begotten Son, had actually passed from this life. But this in no way prevented them from believing and from professing openly that her sacred body had never been subject to the corruption of the tomb, and that the august tabernacle of the Divine Word had never been reduced to dust and ashes. Actually, enlightened by divine grace and moved by affection for her, God's Mother and our own dearest Mother, they have contemplated in an ever clearer light the wonderful harmony and order of those privileges which the most provident God has lavished upon this loving associate of our Redeemer, privileges which reach such an exalted plane that, except for her, nothing created by God other than the human nature of Jesus Christ has ever reached this level.

17. In the liturgical books which deal with the feast either of the dormition or of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin there are expressions that agree in testifying that, when the Virgin Mother of God passed from this earthly exile to heaven, what happened to her sacred body was, by the decree of divine Providence, in keeping with the dignity of the Mother of the Word Incarnate, and with the other privileges she had been accorded. Thus, to cite an illustrious example, this is set forth in that sacramentary which Adrian I, our predecessor of immortal memory, sent to the Emperor Charlemagne. These words are found in this volume: "Venerable to us, O Lord, is the festivity of this day on which the holy Mother of God suffered temporal death, but still could not be kept down by the bonds of death, who has begotten your Son our Lord incarnate from herself."(11)

18. What is here indicated in that sobriety characteristic of the Roman liturgy is presented more clearly and completely in other ancient liturgical books. To take one as an example, the Gallican sacramentary designates this privilege of Mary's as "an ineffable mystery all the more worthy of praise as the Virgin's Assumption is something unique among men." And, in the Byzantine liturgy, not only is the Virgin Mary's bodily Assumption connected time and time again with the dignity of the Mother of God, but also with the other privileges, and in particular with the virginal motherhood granted her by a singular decree of God's Providence. "God, the King of the universe, has granted you favors that surpass nature. As he kept you a virgin in childbirth, thus he has kept your body incorrupt in the tomb and has glorified it by his divine act of transferring it from the tomb."(12)

20. However, since the liturgy of the Church does not engender the Catholic faith, but rather springs from it, in such a way that the practices of the sacred worship proceed from the faith as the fruit comes from the tree, it follows that the holy Fathers and the great Doctors, in the homilies and sermons they gave the people on this feast day, did not draw their teaching from the feast itself as from a primary source, but rather they spoke of this doctrine as something already known and accepted by Christ's faithful. They presented it more clearly. They offered more profound explanations of its meaning and nature, bringing out into sharper light the fact that this feast shows, not only that the dead body of the Blessed Virgin Mary remained incorrupt, but that she gained a triumph out of death, her heavenly glorification after the example of her only begotten Son, Jesus Christ-truths that the liturgical books had frequently touched upon concisely and briefly.

21. Thus St. John Damascene, an outstanding herald of this traditional truth, spoke out with powerful eloquence when he compared the bodily Assumption of the loving Mother of God with her other prerogatives and privileges. "It was fitting that she, who had kept her virginity intact in childbirth, should keep her own body free from all corruption even after death. It was fitting that she, who had carried the Creator as a child at her breast, should dwell in the divine tabernacles. It was fitting that the spouse, whom the Father had taken to himself, should live in the divine mansions. It was fitting that she, who had seen her Son upon the cross and who had thereby received into her heart the sword of sorrow which she had escaped in the act of giving birth to him, should look upon him as he sits with the Father. It was fitting that God's Mother should possess what belongs to her Son, and that she should be honored by every creature as the Mother and as the handmaid of God."(17)

22. These words of St. John Damascene agree perfectly with what others have taught on this same subject. Statements no less clear and accurate are to be found in sermons delivered by Fathers of an earlier time or of the same period, particularly on the occasion of this feast. And so, to cite some other examples, St. Germanus of Constantinople considered the fact that the body of Mary, the virgin Mother of God, was incorrupt and had been taken up into heaven to be in keeping, not only with her divine motherhood, but also with the special holiness of her virginal body. "You are she who, as it is written, appears in beauty, and your virginal body is all holy, all chaste, entirely the dwelling place of God, so that it is henceforth completely exempt from dissolution into dust. Though still human, it is changed into the heavenly life of incorruptibility, truly living and glorious, undamaged and sharing in perfect life."(18) And another very ancient writer asserts: "As the most glorious Mother of Christ, our Savior and God and the giver of life and immortality, has been endowed with life by him, she has received an eternal incorruptibility of the body together with him who has raised her up from the tomb and has taken her up to himself in a way known only to him."(19)

26. Often there are theologians and preachers who, following in the footsteps of the holy Fathers,(20) have been rather free in their use of events and expressions taken from Sacred Scripture to explain their belief in the Assumption. Thus, to mention only a few of the texts rather frequently cited in this fashion, some have employed the words of the psalmist: "Arise, O Lord, into your resting place: you and the ark, which you have sanctified"(21); and have looked upon the Ark of the Covenant, built of incorruptible wood and placed in the Lord's temple, as a type of the most pure body of the Virgin Mary, preserved and exempt from all the corruption of the tomb and raised up to such glory in heaven. Treating of this subject, they also describe her as the Queen entering triumphantly into the royal halls of heaven and sitting at the right hand of the divine Redeemer.(22) Likewise they mention the Spouse of the Canticles "that goes up by the desert, as a pillar of smoke of aromatical spices, of myrrh and frankincense" to be crowned.(23) These are proposed as depicting that heavenly Queen and heavenly Spouse who has been lifted up to the courts of heaven with the divine Bridegroom.

28. Thus, during the earliest period of scholastic theology, that most pious man, Amadeus, Bishop of Lausarme, held that the Virgin Mary's flesh had remained incorrupt-for it is wrong to believe that her body has seen corruption-because it was really united again to her soul and, together with it, crowned with great glory in the heavenly courts. "For she was full of grace and blessed among women. She alone merited to conceive the true God of true God, whom as a virgin, she brought forth, to whom as a virgin she gave milk, fondling him in her lap, and in all things she waited upon him with loving care."(26)

29. Among the holy writers who at that time employed statements and various images and analogies of Sacred Scripture to Illustrate and to confirm the doctrine of the Assumption, which was piously believed, the Evangelical Doctor, St. Anthony of Padua, holds a special place. On the feast day of the Assumption, while explaining the prophet's words: "I will glorify the place of my feet,"(27) he stated it as certain that the divine Redeemer had bedecked with supreme glory his most beloved Mother from whom he had received human flesh. He asserts that "you have here a clear statement that the Blessed Virgin has been assumed in her body, where was the place of the Lord's feet. Hence it is that the holy Psalmist writes: 'Arise, O Lord, into your resting place: you and the ark which you have sanctified."' And he asserts that, just as Jesus Christ has risen from the death over which he triumphed and has ascended to the right hand of the Father, so likewise the ark of his sanctification "has risen up, since on this day the Virgin Mother has been taken up to her heavenly dwelling."(28)

30. When, during the Middle Ages, scholastic theology was especially flourishing, St. Albert the Great who, to establish this teaching, had gathered together many proofs from Sacred Scripture, from the statements of older writers, and finally from the liturgy and from what is known as theological reasoning, concluded in this way: "From these proofs and authorities and from many others, it is manifest that the most blessed Mother of God has been assumed above the choirs of angels. And this we believe in every way to be true."(29) And, in a sermon which he delivered on the sacred day of the Blessed Virgin Mary's annunciation, explained the words "Hail, full of grace"-words used by the angel who addressed her-the Universal Doctor, comparing the Blessed Virgin with Eve, stated clearly and incisively that she was exempted from the fourfold curse that had been laid upon Eve.(30)

31. Following the footsteps of his distinguished teacher, the Angelic Doctor, despite the fact that he never dealt directly with this question, nevertheless, whenever he touched upon it, always held together with the Catholic Church, that Mary's body had been assumed into heaven along with her soul.(31)

32. Along with many others, the Seraphic Doctor held the same views. He considered it as entirely certain that, as God had preserved the most holy Virgin Mary from the violation of her virginal purity and integrity in conceiving and in childbirth, he would never have permitted her body to have been resolved into dust and ashes.(32) Explaining these words of Sacred Scripture: "Who is this that comes up from the desert, flowing with delights, leaning upon her beloved?"(33) and applying them in a kind of accommodated sense to the Blessed Virgin, he reasons thus: "From this we can see that she is there bodily...her blessedness would not have been complete unless she were there as a person. The soul is not a person, but the soul, joined to the body, is a person. It is manifest that she is there in soul and in body. Otherwise she would not possess her complete beatitude.(34)

33. In the fifteenth century, during a later period of scholastic theology, St. Bernardine of Siena collected and diligently evaluated all that the medieval theologians had said and taught on this question. He was not content with setting down the principal considerations which these writers of an earlier day had already expressed, but he added others of his own. The likeness between God's Mother and her divine Son, in the way of the nobility and dignity of body and of soul - a likeness that forbids us to think of the heavenly Queen as being separated from the heavenly King - makes it entirely imperative that Mary "should be only where Christ is."(35) Moreover, it is reasonable and fitting that not only the soul and body of a man, but also the soul and body of a woman should have obtained heavenly glory. Finally, since the Church has never looked for the bodily relics of the Blessed Virgin nor proposed them for the veneration of the people, we have a proof on the order of a sensible experience.(36)

34. The above-mentioned teachings of the holy Fathers and of the Doctors have been in common use during more recent times. Gathering together the testimonies of the Christians of earlier days, St. Robert Bellarmine exclaimed: "And who, I ask, could believe that the ark of holiness, the dwelling place of the Word of God, the temple of the Holy Spirit, could be reduced to ruin? My soul is filled with horror at the thought that this virginal flesh which had begotten God, had brought him into the world, had nourished and carried him, could have been turned into ashes or given over to be food for worms."(37)

35. In like manner St. Francis de Sales, after asserting that it is wrong to doubt that Jesus Christ has himself observed, in the most perfect way, the divine commandment by which children are ordered to honor their parents, asks this question: "What son would not bring his mother back to life and would not bring her into paradise after her death if he could?"(38) And St. Alphonsus writes that "Jesus did not wish to have the body of Mary corrupted after death, since it would have redounded to his own dishonor to have her virginal flesh, from which he himself had assumed flesh, reduced to dust."(39)

36. Once the mystery which is commemorated in this feast had been placed in its proper light, there were not lacking teachers who, instead of dealing with the theological reasonings that show why it is fitting and right to believe the bodily Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary into heaven, chose to focus their mind and attention on the faith of the Church itself, which is the Mystical Body of Christ without stain or wrinkle(40) and is called by the Apostle "the pillar and ground of truth."(41) Relying on this common faith, they considered the teaching opposed to the doctrine of our Lady's Assumption as temerarious, if not heretical. Thus, like not a few others, St. Peter Canisius, after he had declared that the very word "assumption" signifies the glorification, not only of the soul but also of the body, and that the Church has venerated and has solemnly celebrated this mystery of Mary's Assumption for many centuries, adds these words of warning: "This teaching has already been accepted for some centuries, it has been held as certain in the minds of the pious people, and it has been taught to the entire Church in such a way that those who deny that Mary's body has been assumed into heaven are not to be listened to patiently but are everywhere to be denounced as over-contentious or rash men, and as imbued with a spirit that is heretical rather than Catholic."(42)

37. At the same time the great Suarez was professing in the field of mariology the norm that "keeping in mind the standards of propriety, and when there is no contradiction or repugnance on the part of Scripture, the mysteries of grace which God has wrought in the Virgin must be measured, not by the ordinary laws, but by the divine omnipotence."(43) Supported by the common faith of the entire Church on the subject of the mystery of the Assumption, he could conclude that this mystery was to be believed with the same firmness of assent as that given to the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin. Thus he already held that such truths could be defined.

38. All these proofs and considerations of the holy Fathers and the theologians are based upon the Sacred Writings as their ultimate foundation. These set the loving Mother of God as it were before our very eyes as most intimately joined to her divine Son and as always sharing his lot. Consequently it seems impossible to think of her, the one who conceived Christ, brought him forth, nursed him with her milk, held him in her arms, and clasped him to her breast, as being apart from him in body, even though not in soul, after this earthly life. Since our Redeemer is the Son of Mary, he could not do otherwise, as the perfect observer of God's law, than to honor, not only his eternal Father, but also his most beloved Mother. And, since it was within his power to grant her this great honor, to preserve her from the corruption of the tomb, we must believe that he really acted in this way.

potuit, decuit ergo fecit all over again.

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39. We must remember especially that, since the second century, the Virgin Mary has been designated by the holy Fathers as the new Eve, who, although subject to the new Adam, is most intimately associated with him in that struggle against the infernal foe which, as foretold in the protoevangelium,(44) would finally result in that most complete victory over the sin and death which are always mentioned together in the writings of the Apostle of the Gentiles.(45) Consequently, just as the glorious resurrection of Christ was an essential part and the final sign of this victory, so that struggle which was common to the Blessed Virgin and her divine Son should be brought to a close by the glorification of her virginal body, for the same Apostle says: "When this mortal thing hath put on immortality, then shall come to pass the saying that is written: Death is swallowed up in victory."(46)

40. Hence the revered Mother of God, from all eternity joined in a hidden way with Jesus Christ in one and the same decree of predestination,(47) immaculate in her conception, a most perfect virgin in her divine motherhood, the noble associate of the divine Redeemer who has won a complete triumph over sin and its consequences, finally obtained, as the supreme culmination of her privileges, that she should be preserved free from the corruption of the tomb and that, like her own Son, having overcome death, she might be taken up body and soul to the glory of heaven where, as Queen, she sits in splendor at the right hand of her Son, the immortal King of the Ages.(48)
44. For which reason, after we have poured forth prayers of supplication again and again to God, and have invoked the light of the Spirit of Truth, for the glory of Almighty God who has lavished his special affection upon the Virgin Mary, for the honor of her Son, the immortal King of the Ages and the Victor over sin and death, for the increase of the glory of that same august Mother, and for the joy and exultation of the entire Church; by the authority of our Lord Jesus Christ, of the Blessed Apostles Peter and Paul, and by our own authority, we pronounce, declare, and define it to be a divinely revealed dogma: that the Immaculate Mother of God, the ever Virgin Mary, having completed the course of her earthly life, was assumed body and soul into heavenly glory.
She only died because the master is not greater than the servant and Jesus died. She did not die as the result of sin. Second, she did not die as you and I do but rather experienced a "dormition".
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« Reply #95 on: April 08, 2009, 10:42:10 AM »

She only died because the master is not greater than the servant and Jesus died. She did not die as the result of sin. Second, she did not die as you and I do but rather experienced a "dormition".


Ah, what a tangled web we weave...

Not really. You simply present it as such to bolster your position. I believe that Mary not because of original sin but because her life was completely in conformity to that of her son, who died and most definitely did not posses original sin.
Second, I believe her death was truely a "dormition" hardly a death at all. So much so that she fell asleep then found her self in heaven. Not like our death.

I once got into an argument on the air with Fr. Pachwa and this was his argument too.  The implications for that "Fifth Marian Dogma" which we don't believe, but no doubt (as Fr. Pachwa and others claim happened with the IC) it will be claimed we did until the Vatican proclaimed Co-Redemptrix.

No, none of this has support in Scripture or the Fathers.

The Son poured out His Life into the Life of the Church.  Did His mother?

If Mary would not inherit the Ancestral Sin , she would not known corruption and death ,
Why not? Jesus had no sin yet he died.

Christ died as the Sacrifice.  Was the Holy Theotokos' death a sacrifice?

Quote
Further, Mary could have died since her life was in completely conformity that of her divine son who died. Also, if Christ died, how could Mary not?
LOL.  No, you are going to have explain that inconsistency yourselves.

Quote
A servant is not greater than her master. Finally, I do not believe that Mary's death was like our death. I believe that it was a true dormition, a falling asleep, such a gentle thing that upon her dormition she awoke in heaven. Original Sin is not required in any of this.

Your Vatican's pronouncements link the two themselves.

and she would not needed a Saviour .
Not true. A person can be saved from something happening, or can be saved from it after it happens. Imagine a hole in the forest that is hard to see. Imagine that a person falls in and I pull him out. I have saved the person after the fact. Imagine that I stop a person from falling in a whole who is just about to step in. The second person I have saved before the event. Mary is like the second person. She was saved before she fell into the whole of sin. Thus, even with the IC, Jesus is her savior.

Ah, but that problem of that temporal loop: the Blood that cleans from sin had not yet been spilt.  In fact, it was being made in the conception of the Holy Theotokos.

Of course conforming Scriptures and Tradition she was Saved by God , trought Grace , The power of the Holy Spirit came upon her and washed away Her sin(s) . For this she was grateful and said : My heart rejoiced in God , my Saviour . So both Bible and Tradition "kind of" doesn`t support this dogma , and this dogma is not in the line with the Bible or Tradition . I wrote about this two in another topic "Regarding Immaculated Conception" it is more wide and largely into subject .
So you believe Mary was a sinner? You don't believe that she was "All Holy" as the Liturgy teaches?


The EP is "His All-Holiness," but I don't think even the Greeks or the Chief Secretary think he's sinless.
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« Reply #96 on: April 08, 2009, 11:07:05 AM »

Hi all,
I tried and resisted to intervene up to now in this conversation, but now I find myself so upset for the take this conversation has taken that I felt I should intervene in favour of Orthodoxy, now.
First of all, it seems that the will to "dogmatize" everything is typically latin. That's so sad... that it reminds me of those Scholars in the Middle Ages trying to define the gender of angels...

1) My easiest reply to your last post, dear brother Papist, is that you misunderstand the word "dormition". The word is a Latin rendering of a Greek word meaning "to fall asleep". That's true. But you're making the same mistake as the apostles and the parents of that girl Jesus once resurrected when he said "she's asleep" and had to clarify "she died". The expression "Feast of Dormition" is thus no proof at all that she never died...

2) When the Church honours Mary as "All holy" it's not like saying she was "Ever Holy". If you reflect on this, maybe the Liturgy would have preferred a term such as "aieonohagia" as for "aieonoparthenos" (ever-virgin) to mean that she was ALWAYS holy, isn't it? "All holy" means that she experienced a special integrity with respect even to the Apostles because she never actually sinned at all after Christ's conception.

3) Explicitly saying that Mary was created Immaculate means that she was somehow programmed not to partake in the sins of this world. While I personally admit saying that Mary could have been pure since conception, I understand that she was like all other humans in everything but she abstained by faith from all sins, thus cooperating with God's grace. Now, we Orthodox believe you're all pure at birth, then Mary is not so special in her conception, but in the course of her life she showed she's different then us: she is different not in her nature (which you say to be purer since her conception) but by her moral integrity.

4) If you consider the word "all" in the absolute sense you take, then how do you explain that Paul states how ALL HAVE SINNED BUT CHRIST? Do you think he ignored the truth of Immaculate conception? Or maybe he just forgot it?  Or perhaps (as we affirm) the term "all" shouldn't be taken in such an integralistic manner? After all, if the word "all" is thus interpreted, we should admit for example that God's projects to bless "all" nations in Abraham and to save "all" men through Christ have miserably failed, don't you think? So, as you can see by yourself, the Greek word for "all" has a more limited meaning then the its Western counterpart.

God bless,
Alex
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« Reply #97 on: April 08, 2009, 11:12:22 AM »

4 Surely he took up our infirmities
       and carried our sorrows,
       yet we considered him stricken by God,
       smitten by him, and afflicted.

 5 But he was pierced for our transgressions,
       he was crushed for our iniquities;
       the punishment that brought us peace was upon him,
       and by his wounds we are healed.

 6 We all, like sheep, have gone astray,
       each of us has turned to his own way;
       and the LORD has laid on him
       the iniquity of us all.


From Isaiah 53 . All i have to say this delusion about Mariolatry made you forget the all idea of christianity and the center of Christianity , wich is Jesus Christ . Jesus Christ is our Saviour , not Mary . No one , NO ONE WAS WORTHY TO SAVE THE WORLD , NO JUST , NO ONE ON EARTH , UNDER THE EARTH OR IN HEAVEN . REMMEMBER THIS !
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« Reply #98 on: April 08, 2009, 11:21:14 AM »

4 Surely he took up our infirmities
       and carried our sorrows,
       yet we considered him stricken by God,
       smitten by him, and afflicted.

 5 But he was pierced for our transgressions,
       he was crushed for our iniquities;
       the punishment that brought us peace was upon him,
       and by his wounds we are healed.

 6 We all, like sheep, have gone astray,
       each of us has turned to his own way;
       and the LORD has laid on him
       the iniquity of us all.


From Isaiah 53 . All i have to say this delusion about Mariolatry made you forget the all idea of christianity and the center of Christianity , wich is Jesus Christ . Jesus Christ is our Saviour , not Mary . No one , NO ONE WAS WORTHY TO SAVE THE WORLD , NO JUST , NO ONE ON EARTH , UNDER THE EARTH OR IN HEAVEN . REMMEMBER THIS !
First, the IC is not a delusion, its denial is. Second, no one ever said that Mary could save us. You should not lie about other people's religions. Its an un-Christian thing to do.
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« Reply #99 on: April 08, 2009, 11:23:08 AM »

3) Explicitly saying that Mary was created Immaculate means that she was somehow programmed not to partake in the sins of this world.
Only in the same Adam and Eve were "programed" not to sin.
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« Reply #100 on: April 08, 2009, 12:24:15 PM »

I'd like to add to Marc Hanna's excellent points about an OO perspective.  Some Catholics have shown me pamphlets of HH Pope Shenouda giving the Theotokos language about her "all-purity," her being "immaculate," and without sin (akin especially in quoting St. Ephrem the Syrian and using his language).  If one understand HH Pope Shenouda in context, one would understand that he, in keeping with OO tradition, has taught very clearly that she was pure in her actions, but not necessarily in her nature.  She, as anyone else, was born in sin.  He does mention however the requirement that her womb be cleansed for the conception of the Logos.  In this case, when the Holy Spirit came upon her, that was her moment of "purification from Original Sin" so to speak so that the Logos can take flesh from her.

St. Jacob of Serugh (OO saint post-Chalcedonian) in his amazingly poetic and dogmatic praises to the Theotokos says something similar to that extent.  It was not from her own conception she was purified, but from the descending of the Holy Spirit upon her.  This truly indeed preserves her free will.  Not that free will is ontologically taken away if one has no Original Sin, but from a pragmatic sense.  She may have been sanctified for the role from her conception as was John the Forerunner, but not necessarily purified, for she did not decide yet whether she wanted to bear the Logos Incarnate yet.  Consider the vessels of the Old Testament.  They were washed with water and oil before the Shekinah glory came, but after the Shekinah glory came, they washed it with blood, not before.  It seems to me this is a clear testament of how we should interpret the Virgin Theotokos.

Finally, I like to mention one last thing from EO/Latin tradition, a quote from Pope Leo the Great in the fifth century, from his 24th Sermon:

Quote
And so to undo this chain of sin and death, the Almighty Son of God, that fills all things and contains all things, altogether equal to the Father and co-eternal in one essence from Him and with Him, took on Him man's nature, and the Creator and Lord of all things deigned to be a mortal: choosing for His mother one whom He had made, one who, without loss of her maiden honour, supplied so much of bodily substance, that without the pollution of human seed the New Man might be possessed of purity and truth. In Christ, therefore, born of the Virgin's womb, the nature does not differ from ours, because His nativity is wonderful. For He Who is true God, is also true man: and there is no lie in either nature. The Word became flesh by exaltation of the flesh, not by failure of the Godhead: which so tempered its power and goodness as to exalt our nature by taking it, and not to lose His own by imparting it. In this nativity of Christ, according to the prophecy of David, truth sprang out of the earth, and righteousness looked down from heaven . In this nativity also, Isaiah's saying is fulfilled, let the earth produce and bring forth salvation, and let righteousness spring up together (Isaiah 45:8). For the earth of human flesh, which in the first transgressor, was cursed, in this Offspring of the Blessed Virgin only produced a seed that was blessed and free from the fault of its stock. And each one is a partaker of this spiritual origin in regeneration; and to every one when he is re-born, the water of baptism is like the Virgin's womb; for the same Holy Spirit fills the font, Who filled the Virgin, that the sin, which that sacred conception overthrew, may be taken away by this mystical washing.

So it seems that Leo was teaching two things that contributed to the purity of Christ:
1.  He was born of a Virgin, not of impure seed (I suppose to become a new Seed).
2.  The Holy Spirit and the conception seemed to take away the Virgin's "sin."

Am I interpreting this correctly?  Or does Leo teach elsewhere in a better context?  I must admit, I got this quote directly from someone else, but I cannot confirm this being correct as I have not studied its context, but I can say I copied and pasted this particular quote from this site:
http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/360324.htm

God bless.
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« Reply #101 on: April 08, 2009, 12:28:06 PM »

Hi all,
I tried and resisted to intervene up to now in this conversation, but now I find myself so upset for the take this conversation has taken that I felt I should intervene in favour of Orthodoxy, now.
First of all, it seems that the will to "dogmatize" everything is typically latin. That's so sad... that it reminds me of those Scholars in the Middle Ages trying to define the gender of angels...

1) My easiest reply to your last post, dear brother Papist, is that you misunderstand the word "dormition". The word is a Latin rendering of a Greek word meaning "to fall asleep". That's true. But you're making the same mistake as the apostles and the parents of that girl Jesus once resurrected when he said "she's asleep" and had to clarify "she died". The expression "Feast of Dormition" is thus no proof at all that she never died...

"Falling asleep" is also the usual term for Orthodox death.  Any Orthodox.

Quote
2) When the Church honours Mary as "All holy" it's not like saying she was "Ever Holy". If you reflect on this, maybe the Liturgy would have preferred a term such as "aieonohagia" as for "aieonoparthenos" (ever-virgin) to mean that she was ALWAYS holy, isn't it? "All holy" means that she experienced a special integrity with respect even to the Apostles because she never actually sinned at all after Christ's conception.

Excellent point!  Never thought of that, and the contrasting language is right there!

I'd like to add to Marc Hanna's excellent points about an OO perspective.  Some Catholics have shown me pamphlets of HH Pope Shenouda giving the Theotokos language about her "all-purity," her being "immaculate," and without sin.  If one understand HH Pope Shenouda in context, one would understand that he, in keeping with OO tradition, has taught very clearly that she was pure in her actions, but not necessarily in her nature.  She, as anyone else, was born in sin.  He does mention however the requirement that her womb be cleansed for the conception of the Logos.  In this case, when the Holy Spirit came upon her, that was her moment of "purification from Original Sin" so to speak so that the Logos can take flesh from her.

St. Jacob of Serugh (OO saint post-Chalcedonian) in his amazingly poetic and dogmatic praises to the Theotokos says something similar to that extent.  It was not from her own conception she was purified, but from the descending of the Holy Spirit upon her.  This truly indeed preserves her free will.  Not that free will is ontologically taken away if one has no Original Sin, but from a pragmatic sense.  She may have been sanctified for the role from her conception as was John the Forerunner, but not necessarily purified, for she did not decide yet whether she wanted to bear the Logos Incarnate yet.  Consider the vessels of the Old Testament.  They were washed with water and oil before the Shekinah glory came, but after the Shekinah glory came, they washed it with blood, not before.  It seems to me this is a clear testament of how we should interpret the Virgin Theotokos.

Excellent points.

Quote
Finally, I like to mention one last thing from EO/Latin tradition, a quote from Pope Leo the Great in the fifth century, from his 24th Sermon:

Quote
And so to undo this chain of sin and death, the Almighty Son of God, that fills all things and contains all things, altogether equal to the Father and co-eternal in one essence from Him and with Him, took on Him man's nature, and the Creator and Lord of all things deigned to be a mortal: choosing for His mother one whom He had made, one who, without loss of her maiden honour, supplied so much of bodily substance, that without the pollution of human seed the New Man might be possessed of purity and truth. In Christ, therefore, born of the Virgin's womb, the nature does not differ from ours, because His nativity is wonderful. For He Who is true God, is also true man: and there is no lie in either nature. The Word became flesh by exaltation of the flesh, not by failure of the Godhead: which so tempered its power and goodness as to exalt our nature by taking it, and not to lose His own by imparting it. In this nativity of Christ, according to the prophecy of David, truth sprang out of the earth, and righteousness looked down from heaven . In this nativity also, Isaiah's saying is fulfilled, let the earth produce and bring forth salvation, and let righteousness spring up together (Isaiah 45:Cool. For the earth of human flesh, which in the first transgressor, was cursed, in this Offspring of the Blessed Virgin only produced a seed that was blessed and free from the fault of its stock. And each one is a partaker of this spiritual origin in regeneration; and to every one when he is re-born, the water of baptism is like the Virgin's womb; for the same Holy Spirit fills the font, Who filled the Virgin, that the sin, which that sacred conception overthrew, may be taken away by this mystical washing.

So it seems that Leo was teaching two things that contributed to the purity of Christ:
1.  He was born of a Virgin, not of impure seed (I suppose to become a new Seed).
2.  The Holy Spirit and the conception seemed to take away the Virgin's "sin."

Am I interpreting this correctly?  Or does Leo teach elsewhere in a better context?  I must admit, I got this quote directly from someone else, but I cannot confirm this being correct as I have not studied its context, but I can say I copied and pasted this particular quote from this site:
http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/360324.htm

God bless.

A thread on another forum  police Roll Eyes police most of us here came from, deals precisely with these quotes.  The Vatican supporters refused to see that Pope St. Leo was talking about the Theotokos' conception of Christ, not her own conception in St. Anne.
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« Reply #102 on: April 08, 2009, 01:05:46 PM »

I forgot the beginning of Bernard writing on the "novelty" of the IC:
Quote
Bernard of Clarivaux (12th cent.):

The Mother of the Lord, you say, ought greatly to be honoured. You say well, but the honour of a queen loves justice. The royal Virgin does not need false honour, since she is amply supplied with true titles to honour and badges of her dignity. Honour indeed the purity of her flesh, the sanctity of her life, wonder at her motherhood as a virgin, adore her Divine offspring. Extol the prodigy by which she brought into the world without pain the Son, whom she had conceived without concupiscence. Proclaim her to be reverenced by the angels, to have been desired by the nations, to have been known beforehand by Patriarchs and Prophets, chosen by God out of all women and raised above them all. Magnify her as the medium by whom grace was displayed, the instrument of salvation, the restorer of the ages; and finally extol her as having been exalted above the choirs of angels to the celestial realms. These things the Church sings concerning her, and has taught me to repeat the same things in her praise, and what I have learnt from the Church I both hold securely myself and teach to others; what I have not received from the Church I confess I should with great difficulty admit. I have received then from the Church that day to be reverenced with the highest veneration, when being taken up from this sinful earth, she made entry into the heavens; a festival of most honoured joy. With no less clearness have I learned in the Church to celebrate the birth of the Virgin, and from the Church undoubtedly to hold it to have been holy and joyful; holding most firmly with the Church, that she received in the womb that she should come into the world holy. And indeed I read concerning Jeremiah, that before he came forth from the womb he was sanctified, and I think no otherwise of John the Baptist, who, himself in the womb of his mother, felt the presence of his Lord in the womb (S. Luke i. 41). It is matter for consideration whether the same opinion may not be held of holy David, on account of what he said in addressing God: In Thee I have been strengthened from the womb: Thou art He who took me out of my mother’s bowels (Ps. lxxi. 6); and again: I was cast upon Thee from the womb: Thou art my God from my mother’s belly (Ps. xxii. 10). And Jeremiah is thus addressed: Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest out of the womb I sanctified thee (Jer. i. 5). How beautifully the Divine oracle has distinguished between conception in the womb and birth from the womb! and showed that if the one was foreseen only, the other was blessed beforehand with the gift of holiness: that no one might think that the glory of Jeremiah consisted only in being the object of the foreknowledge of God, but also of His predestination.

3. Let us, however, grant this in the case of Jeremiah. What shall be said of John the Baptist, of whom an angel announced beforehand that he should be filled with the Holy Ghost, even from his mother’s womb? I cannot suppose that this is to be referred to predestination or to foreknowledge. For the words of the angel were without doubt fulfilled in their time, as he foretold; and the man (as cannot be doubted) filled with the Holy Ghost at the time and place appointed, as he predicted. But most certainly the Holy Ghost sanctified the man whom He filled. But how far this sanctification availed against original sin, whether for him, or for that prophet, or for any other who was thus prevented by grace, I would not rashly determine. But of these holy persons whom God has sanctified, and brought forth from the womb with the same sanctification which they have received in the womb, I do not hesitate to say that the taint of original sin which they contracted in conception, could not in any manner take away or fetter by the mere act of birth, the benediction already bestowed. Would any one dare to say that a child filled with the Holy Ghost, would remain notwithstanding a child of wrath; and if he had died in his mother’s womb, where he had received this fulness of the Spirit, would endure the pains of damnation? That opinion is very severe; I, however, do not dare to decide anything respecting the question by my own judgment. However that may be, the Church, which regards and declares, not the nativity, but only the death of other saints as precious, makes a singular exception for him of whom an angel singularly said, and many shall rejoice in his birth (Luke i. 14., 15), and with rejoicing honours his nativity. For why should not the birth be holy, and even glad and joyful, of one who leaped with joy even in the womb of his mother?

4. The gift, therefore, which has certainly been conferred upon some, though few, mortals, cannot for a moment be supposed to have been denied to that so highly favoured Virgin, through whom the whole human race came forth into life. Beyond doubt the mother of the Lord also was holy before birth; nor is holy Church at all in error in accounting the day of her nativity holy, and celebrating it each year with solemn and thankful joy. I consider that the blessing of a fuller sanctification descended upon her, so as not only to sanctify her birth, but also to keep her life pure from all sin; which gift is believed to have been bestowed upon none other born of women. This singular privilege of sanctity, to lead her life without any sin, entirely befitted the queen of virgins, who should bear the Destroyer of sin and death, who should obtain the gift of life and righteousness for all. Therefore, her birth was holy, since the abundant sanctity bestowed upon it made it holy even from the womb.

5. What addition can possibly be made to these honours? That her conception, also, they say, which preceded her honourable birth, should be honoured, since if the one had not first taken place, neither would the other, which is honoured. But what if some one else, following a similar train of reasoning, should assert that the honours of a festival ought to be given to each of her parents, then to her grand-parents, and then to their parents, and so on ad infinitum? Thus we should have festivals without number. Such a frequency of joys befits Heaven, not this state of exile. It is the happy lot of those who dwell there, not of strangers and pilgrims. But a writing is brought forward, given, as they say, by revelation from on high, [A writing of this kind is attributed to an English abbot named Elsin in the works of Anselm. Watch out for those angels of light] as if any one would not be able to bring forward another writing in which the Virgin should seem to demand the same honours to her parents also, saying, according to the commandment of the Lord, Honour thy father and thy mother (Exod. xx. 12). I easily persuade myself not to be influenced by such writings, which are supported neither by reason nor by any certain authority. For how does the consequence follow that since the conception has preceded the birth, and the birth is holy, the conception should be considered holy also? Did it make the birth holy because it preceded it? Although the one came first that the other might be, yet not that it might be holy. From whence came that holiness to the conception which was to be transmitted to the birth which followed? Was it not rather because the conception preceded without holiness that it was needful for the being conceived to be sanctified, that a holy birth might then follow? Or shall we say that the birth which was later than the conception shared with it its holiness? It might be, indeed, that the sanctification which was worked in her when conceived passed over to the birth which followed; but it could not be possible that it should have a retrospective effect upon the conception which had preceded it.
http://www.ccel.org/ccel/bernard/letters.lxviii.html
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« Reply #103 on: April 08, 2009, 05:58:47 PM »

She only died because the master is not greater than the servant and Jesus died.

This seems a piece of mythology from the laity. 

Please reference the infallible papal teaching which confirms what you have just said.


Quote
She did not die as the result of sin.


The Catechism (1018) teaches that sin is the cause of bodily death.    You are saying the Catechism is heretical?

If she did not inherit death as the result of original sin, just like all the children of Adam, then what was the cause of her death?    


Tread carefully now,   You seem to be on the verge of heresy in these matters.

Quote
she did not die as you and I do but rather experienced a "dormition".

Come, come, Papist.  It was quite the usual thing in the early days to speak of the death of Christians as a dormition (dormitio) or as a transit (transitus.)

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« Reply #104 on: April 08, 2009, 06:02:43 PM »

So you believe Mary was a sinner? You don't believe that she was "All Holy" as the Liturgy teaches?


Why bring the Liturgy into it?

The Liturgy calls the Patriarch of Constantinople "All Holy."

I know I am going to be quite shocked when you start arguing this proves he was immaculately conceived.   Shocked
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« Reply #105 on: April 08, 2009, 06:20:23 PM »

Btw, can you post again the quotes of Maximillian Kolbe's ideas on the Theotokos.  That might be a good context to see what the IC leads to (and before anyone complains, look at what the IC and Assumption says as to the proof that these "dogmas" are the natural result of X, Y and Z pronouncement).

The Quasi-Incarnation of the Spirit

Ah, you are referring to the nascent heresy, that the Mother of God is the quasi-incarnation of the Holy Spirit.

It is said to be gaining grounds in Catholic circles, especially among the Franciscans.  That is a bad sign since the Franciscans have played a major role in getting previous Marian errors accepted by Rome.

It will be quite interesting to see how the quasi-incarnation is introduced and promoted.   We can expect to suddenly see quotes form the ancient Fathers produced, as proof that the Church has always believed in it.   Appeals will be made to the  Eastern Fathers to show that the Orthodox used to believe it but are now perversely denying it out of anti-Catholic sentiment.

Development of doctrine used to take a long time in the Church of Rome but these days, with the Internet and whatnot, things can be developed much more speedily.  We can expect to see this new development grow rapidly from its node point and reach fruition in our own lifetime, or in the next generation.  We have a unique opportinity to watch at first hand the process of the development of doctrine.
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« Reply #106 on: April 08, 2009, 08:05:35 PM »

I'm going to be really busy over the next few days, and I will try to respond to the sillier arguements presented hear frist when I return.
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« Reply #107 on: April 08, 2009, 08:12:45 PM »

I'm going to be really busy over the next few days, and I will try to respond to the sillier arguements presented hear frist when I return.

Speaking of sillier arguments.... unless you have now clarified your confusion of the Immaculate Conception as the Immaculate Birth (message #1) you may not be in a position to respond to other things.   Grin
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« Reply #108 on: April 08, 2009, 08:25:20 PM »

Grace and Peace Brothers and Sisters in Christ!

I come to you with a heavy heart as my job of 13 years comes to an end and the company I spent most of my adult life working for closes it's doors. That said I welcome your prayers that God take pity on me in my sorrows and be my light in the dark.

I read these words of St. Bernard and found them to be inspiring for me as one who humbles himself obediently before the Doctrine of the Immaculate Conception.

The gift, therefore, which has certainly been conferred upon some, though few, mortals, cannot for a moment be supposed to have been denied to that so highly favoured Virgin, through whom the whole human race came forth into life. Beyond doubt the mother of the Lord also was holy before birth; nor is holy Church at all in error in accounting the day of her nativity holy, and celebrating it each year with solemn and thankful joy. I consider that the blessing of a fuller sanctification descended upon her, so as not only to sanctify her birth, but also to keep her life pure from all sin; which gift is believed to have been bestowed upon none other born of women. This singular privilege of sanctity, to lead her life without any sin, entirely befitted the queen of virgins, who should bear the Destroyer of sin and death, who should obtain the gift of life and righteousness for all. Therefore, her birth was holy, since the abundant sanctity bestowed upon it made it holy even from the womb.

I believe this but I don't wish to argue over it. I look at it with wonder and humility, the mystery of Our Blessed Virgin Mary.

For the Western Church, we stand at the edge of Triduum in the midst of Holy Week. Lent has past us by and we look to the dark of Holy and Good Friday when Our Lord does descend into that darkest of prisons to free us all from that slavery which binds us to sin.

Free us ole Lord! Free us!
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« Reply #109 on: April 08, 2009, 09:27:52 PM »

I'm going to be really busy over the next few days, and I will try to respond to the sillier arguements presented hear frist when I return.

Speaking of sillier arguments.... unless you have now clarified your confusion of the Immaculate Conception as the Immaculate Birth (message #1) you may not be in a position to respond to other things.   Grin
I already did Father Ambrose. I was just in a hurry when I typed previously. Is it considered a virtue in your Church to irritate people needlessly? I doubt it. I suggest you be a better example of your faith.
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« Reply #110 on: April 08, 2009, 09:54:05 PM »

I'm going to be really busy over the next few days, and I will try to respond to the sillier arguements presented hear frist when I return.

Speaking of sillier arguments.... unless you have now clarified your confusion of the Immaculate Conception as the Immaculate Birth (message #1) you may not be in a position to respond to other things.   Grin
I already did Father Ambrose. I was just in a hurry when I typed previously. Is it considered a virtue in your Church to irritate people needlessly? I doubt it. I suggest you be a better example of your faith.

If a man falls into what is technically heresy simply because he is typing in a hurry, I think that he is a poor example of his faith.  Haste which produces typos is one thing.  Haste which produces heresy shows that the grasp of theology is a little superficial.   You see, we can play tit for tat with the ad hominems if you like.   Sad
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« Reply #111 on: April 09, 2009, 09:24:17 AM »

Dear brother Marc,

Does anyone have any sayings from the fathers on this topic?  Just so we can all agree, let's limit these saying to those pre 5th century.
I don't think there are any explicit sayings.  I think the belief came out of a pious meditation on such statements about Mary being the New Eve (extant since the second century), combined with the Church's belief on her being the most perfect creation of God (also just as ancient).  It finally came to fruition, as mentioned, with the establishment of the Feast of the Conception in the Byzantine Church in the 7th or 8th century.  Of course, the Feast is not exactly about her preservation from the stain of original sin - it is, rather, about the pious belief that Mary received the graces of the Holy Spirit at her conception.  I'm guessing that the belief quickly blossomed into the realization that receiving all the graces of the Holy Spirit (that a creature can receive, that is) is tantamount to receiving Baptism.  So what is the effect of Baptism?  The cleansing of the stain of original sin. 

When the Feast migrated to the West, it faced opposition.  What the Latins already believed was that Mary received the graces of the Holy Spirit at the moment of her SPIRITUAL conception (i.e., ensoulment or quickening).  However, unlike the Easterns, the Latins distinguished the moment of ensoulment from the moment of physical conception, believing that ensoulment occurred at least 40 days or more after the physical conception.  Thus, some prominent Saints in the Latin Church opposed the introduction of the Feast in Latin Church.  They could not agree to the idea that she received the graces of the Holy Spirit from the moment of her conception, because they believed she received those graces at least 40 days hence.  As part of their rhetoric against the Eastern Feast, they opined that only Jesus was absolutely pure from the moment of his physical conception because he did not have a human father (from whom original sin was traditionally held to be transmitted).

Eventually, the Latin Church grew to understand, together with the East, that the moment of ensoulment occurs at the same instant as the moment of conception.  Hence, the dogma of the IC.

The above explanation demonstrates that there is no difference between what the medieval Latin Fathers (who opposed the introduction of the Feast into the West) believed and what Catholics today believe - namely, that Mary received all the graces the Holy Spirit at the moment of her ensoulment.  The dogma of the IC uses the word "conception" instead of "ensoulment" simply because both occur at the same time (it's the simple and basic commutative law).

There are some things that need to be emphasized about the dogma of the IC that opponents always mispresent (and those misrepresentations are glaringly evident in this thread):

1) The dogma does NOT say that Mary was preserved from original sin.  If she was preserved from original sin PERIOD, then she would not only be spiritually pure, but she would also not experience corruption or death.  But that is, as stated, NOT what the dogma states (contrary to the polemical wishes of Father Ambrose).  Rather it says she was preserved from the STAIN of original sin.  As repeatedly explained, the STAIN of original sin refers to the SPIRITUAL CONSEQUENCES of original sin, NOT the PHYSICAL/TACTILE effects of original sin.

2) The dogma, when it speaks of conception, refers to her SPIRITUAL conception (i.e., ensoulment), not her PHYSICAL conception.  Thus, it is true, and the dogma does not contradict, the teaching of the medieval Latin Fathers that only Jesus had an immaculate PHYSICAL conception.

3) The two points emphasized above evinces that the dogma does not contradict the fact that Mary died.

4) The dogma of the IC refers to nothing more nor less than the fact that Mary received the graces of Baptism at the moment of her conception, as already explained fully in an earlier post.

Blessings,
Marduk
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« Reply #112 on: April 09, 2009, 09:42:17 AM »

Dear brother basil,

Wow! This thread really lends itself to the ad hominen, eh? It does seem to the uninformed follower of all this that both sides are missing the mark on the opposition's arguments. I haven't seen so many knees jerking since lightning hit the football bleachers.

I had always thought that the main objection to immaculate conception was that it was proclaimed as a dogma necessary for salvation and that the Orthodox that it wasn't an essential belief and should not have been proclaimed unilaterally.
That is an astute observation.  As you can see, there is nothing objectionable about the teaching itself, but polemicists simply bend over backwards to misrepresent the teaching and knock down their straw men.  I find it really funny when Orthodox post their agreements to these hollow arguments, because the arguments haven't really addressed the teaching itself, but have only been knocking down straw man caricatures of it.

As it relates to your comments, I would just like to point out 3 things:
1) The Catholic Church recognizes an hierarchy of beliefs wherein some beliefs are more important and necessary for the maintenance of the Faith as others.  The dogma of the IC falls in the lower rungs of that heirarchy of beliefs.
2) The proscription in the dogma is not an anathema (unlike other dogmas), but is a minor excommunication, which itself indicates its status in the hierarchy of beliefs.  So, contrary to what you stated, it is not "a dogma necessary for salvation," at least not like the explicitly Christological dogmas.
3) The dogma's proscription refers only to those who reject the belief.  I know many Orthodox who believe the teaching, though only as theologoumenon (Bp Timothy Ware himself admits that it can be a legitimate theologoumenon).  In fact, if Orthodox really want to remain faithful to Tradition, they would not reject the teaching at all, since the substance of the teaching is celebrated in the Feast of the Conception of St. Anne.  My point is that the dogma does not insist that it be believed as a dogma, but only that it be believed (so one can view it as theologoumenon).

Blessings,
Marduk
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« Reply #113 on: April 09, 2009, 09:44:13 AM »

I hope my Orthodox brethren realize that brother Papist's immortalist view is a peculiarly LATIN Catholic theologoumenon. Not all Latin Catholics believe that way, and it is certainly not a viewpoint that exists in the Eastern and Oriental Catholic Churches.

Blessings
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« Reply #114 on: April 09, 2009, 09:58:04 AM »

Of course, the Feast is not exactly about her preservation from the stain of original sin - it is, rather, about the pious belief that Mary received the graces of the Holy Spirit at her conception.  I'm guessing that the belief quickly blossomed into the realization that receiving all the graces of the Holy Spirit (that a creature can receive, that is) is tantamount to receiving Baptism.  So what is the effect of Baptism?  The cleansing of the stain of original sin. 

I think this is where we might disagree, i.e. "all" the graces"  Certainly, there was never any indication that she received "all" the graces, and in fact, there are many, including those of my tradition, who clearly stated that the removal of such a stain happened at the greeting between her and Archangel Gabriel.  Truly, if one is really "Oriental," St. Jacob of Serugh cannot be ignored.  The statements he made implies that she did not receive ALL the graces.

The Holy Spirit inspired prophets, anointed kings and priests.  The Holy Spirit gave grace to St. John the Forerunner of God (Theoprodromos?), and there is even a tradition of him also being sinless and immaculate and pure in his life.  In fact, it is not merely a descent of the Holy Spirit upon John, but even when he was in the womb of St. Elizabeth, he was "filled" with the Holy Spirit (Luke 1:15).  It is why we seek the intercessions of St. John above all the hosts of angels and archangels and second to the Theotokos.  In fact, the celebration of his birth and conception was established before the Theotokos'.  Surely though, you don't find anyone celebrating the IC of John.  It is therefore a leaping assumption one has to make to say that something "quickly blossomed" into the IC.  It has no consistent tradition in the Church in the view of the OO Church.
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« Reply #115 on: April 09, 2009, 10:16:14 AM »

God bless!Dear Mardukm, you wrote this:
Quote
As it relates to your comments, I would just like to point out 3 things:
1) The Catholic Church recognizes an hierarchy of beliefs wherein some beliefs are more important and necessary for the maintenance of the Faith as others.  The dogma of the IC falls in the lower rungs of that heirarchy of beliefs.
2) The proscription in the dogma is not an anathema (unlike other dogmas), but is a minor excommunication, which itself indicates its status in the hierarchy of beliefs.  So, contrary to what you stated, it is not "a dogma necessary for salvation," at least not like the explicitly Christological dogmas.
3) The dogma's proscription refers only to those who reject the belief.  I know many Orthodox who believe the teaching, though only as theologoumenon (Bp Timothy Ware himself admits that it can be a legitimate theologoumenon).  In fact, if Orthodox really want to remain faithful to Tradition, they would not reject the teaching at all, since the substance of the teaching is celebrated in the Feast of the Conception of St. Anne.  My point is that the dogma does not insist that it be believed as a dogma, but only that it be believed (so one can view it as theologoumenon).

Then why is there a solemnity that the entire RC laity must attend on December 6th? And why was it so urgent to proclaim such a doctrine "ex cathedra"? Let's be serious, my brother... the intent was to impose it to all Christendom. Being free to believe something you call a "theologumenon" means that the Pope should have left the question open. Which is what we Orthodox effectively do, so that everyone can meditate the question by their own and no higher authority can impose it or deny it at all.
If the Pope really has in mind to reconcile the churches, why does he add newer and newer doctrines? Maybe he just wants us to seem naif, unprepared or without any form of "growth" in the faith because we preserve continuously the same and only doctrine of 1000 years ago. There's no need for "evolution" at all... no upgrade!

In Christ,   Alex
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« Reply #116 on: April 09, 2009, 10:21:49 AM »

Dear brother Mina,

I was a frequent lurker at CopticHymns, and I always enjoyed your posts. Smiley  I understand where you are coming from.  I know it never made it into our Tradition.  However, the Feast did manage to become part of the Tradition of our Armenian brethren several centuries ago.

I was using the "all graces" language very loosely, and really only meant "the same graces we receive at Baptism."  I was quoting something I read on the Feast of the Conception from an EO source (or perhaps it was Armenian).  I don't think the term "all graces" is even used by the Latin Church.  I think it is simply hyperbolic language (which is pretty common in praises to Mary) and shouldn't be taken too literally.

As far as your comments on the Forerunner, I would not expect a belief in the IC of John by any stretch of the imagination.  Part of the rationale for the IC is the patristic belief that she was the purest and most immaculate creation of God.  In that sense, I never considered the teaching as being opposed to my Oriental sensibilities.

Blessings,
Marduk

Of course, the Feast is not exactly about her preservation from the stain of original sin - it is, rather, about the pious belief that Mary received the graces of the Holy Spirit at her conception.  I'm guessing that the belief quickly blossomed into the realization that receiving all the graces of the Holy Spirit (that a creature can receive, that is) is tantamount to receiving Baptism.  So what is the effect of Baptism?  The cleansing of the stain of original sin. 

I think this is where we might disagree, i.e. "all" the graces"  Certainly, there was never any indication that she received "all" the graces, and in fact, there are many, including those of my tradition, who clearly stated that the removal of such a stain happened at the greeting between her and Archangel Gabriel.  Truly, if one is really "Oriental," St. Jacob of Serugh cannot be ignored.  The statements he made implies that she did not receive ALL the graces.

The Holy Spirit inspired prophets, anointed kings and priests.  The Holy Spirit gave grace to St. John the Forerunner of God (Theoprodromos?), and there is even a tradition of him also being sinless and immaculate and pure in his life.  It is why we seek the intercessions of St. John above all the hosts of angels and archangels and second to the Theotokos.  In fact, the celebration of his birth and conception was established before the Theotokos'.  Surely though, you don't find anyone celebrating the IC of John.  It is therefore a leaping assumption one has to make to say that something "quickly blossomed" into the IC.  It has no consistent tradition in the Church in the view of the OO Church.
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« Reply #117 on: April 09, 2009, 10:57:17 AM »

Dear brother Alexander,

Thank you for your response.  First, I really don't see what the problem is attending a Feast day (on December 8, btw).  Our obligation to worship on Feast days is based on love, not fear.  That's the kind of love for God that the Catholic Church promotes.  Heck, the Latins have DAILY Mass, one of the things I am actually jealous about in the Latin Tradition.

Second, if you believe the teaching as theologoumenon, I don't understand the problem.  I see you are thinking of becoming EO.  Let me ask you something.  Do you think that EO are free to disbelieve something that is not dogmatically defined but is otherwise contained in their Tradition?  Is there such a thing as "cafeteria Eastern Orthodoxy"?  Last year, an EO priest on CAF stated that even though the Assumption is not a dogma in his Church, he would refuse communion to an EO who did not believe in the doctrine.  Considering these things before I became Catholic, I understood that dogmas in the Catholic Church are simply an indication that a belief is really important and much cherished.  Orthodoxy (Eastern and Oriental) have very important and much cherished doctrines that are not dogmatized, but belief in them are nevertheless viewed as consitutive of one's claim to be Orthodox.  So what if the Latins dogmatized these important and cherished doctrines?  Would they be less important if they were not dogmatized?  I don't think so.  Besides, the prosciption of the dogma, as stated, is not an anathema, but a minor excommunication.  Lack of belief in it would result in nothing more or less than what that EO priest mentioned he would do if he knew someone coming to him for communion rejected the doctrine of the Assumption of the Theotokos - he would refuse it.  In other words, Catholics and Orthodox both hold beliefs that are very important to them.  Catholics, and Latins in particular, like to dogmatize these doctrines.  But the fact that Orthodox don't dogmatize these same doctrines does not make these doctrine any less important to Orthodox.

I hope that has given you some food for thought.

Blessings,
Marduk

God bless!Dear Mardukm, you wrote this:
Quote
As it relates to your comments, I would just like to point out 3 things:
1) The Catholic Church recognizes an hierarchy of beliefs wherein some beliefs are more important and necessary for the maintenance of the Faith as others.  The dogma of the IC falls in the lower rungs of that heirarchy of beliefs.
2) The proscription in the dogma is not an anathema (unlike other dogmas), but is a minor excommunication, which itself indicates its status in the hierarchy of beliefs.  So, contrary to what you stated, it is not "a dogma necessary for salvation," at least not like the explicitly Christological dogmas.
3) The dogma's proscription refers only to those who reject the belief.  I know many Orthodox who believe the teaching, though only as theologoumenon (Bp Timothy Ware himself admits that it can be a legitimate theologoumenon).  In fact, if Orthodox really want to remain faithful to Tradition, they would not reject the teaching at all, since the substance of the teaching is celebrated in the Feast of the Conception of St. Anne.  My point is that the dogma does not insist that it be believed as a dogma, but only that it be believed (so one can view it as theologoumenon).

Then why is there a solemnity that the entire RC laity must attend on December 6th? And why was it so urgent to proclaim such a doctrine "ex cathedra"? Let's be serious, my brother... the intent was to impose it to all Christendom. Being free to believe something you call a "theologumenon" means that the Pope should have left the question open. Which is what we Orthodox effectively do, so that everyone can meditate the question by their own and no higher authority can impose it or deny it at all.
If the Pope really has in mind to reconcile the churches, why does he add newer and newer doctrines? Maybe he just wants us to seem naif, unprepared or without any form of "growth" in the faith because we preserve continuously the same and only doctrine of 1000 years ago. There's no need for "evolution" at all... no upgrade!

In Christ,   Alex
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« Reply #118 on: April 09, 2009, 11:14:04 AM »

The Quasi-Incarnation of the Spirit

Ah, you are referring to the nascent heresy, that the Mother of God is the quasi-incarnation of the Holy Spirit.

It is said to be gaining grounds in Catholic circles, especially among the Franciscans.  That is a bad sign since the Franciscans have played a major role in getting previous Marian errors accepted by Rome.

It will be quite interesting to see how the quasi-incarnation is introduced and promoted.   We can expect to suddenly see quotes form the ancient Fathers produced, as proof that the Church has always believed in it.   Appeals will be made to the  Eastern Fathers to show that the Orthodox used to believe it but are now perversely denying it out of anti-Catholic sentiment.

Development of doctrine used to take a long time in the Church of Rome but these days, with the Internet and whatnot, things can be developed much more speedily.  We can expect to see this new development grow rapidly from its node point and reach fruition in our own lifetime, or in the next generation.  We have a unique opportinity to watch at first hand the process of the development of doctrine.
Not to derail this thread, and I don't think I am; but what is the The Quasi-Incarnation of the Spirit that you speak of? I can't seem to find anything about it. God Bless!
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« Reply #119 on: April 09, 2009, 11:21:56 AM »

Wow! This thread really lends itself to the ad hominen, eh? It does seem to the uninformed follower of all this that both sides are missing the mark on the opposition's arguments. I haven't seen so many knees jerking since lightning hit the football bleachers.

I had always thought that the main objection to immaculate conception was that it was proclaimed as a dogma necessary for salvation and that the Orthodox that it wasn't an essential belief and should not have been proclaimed unilaterally.
That is an astute observation.  As you can see, there is nothing objectionable about the teaching itself,

That's neither true, nor what he said.  The fact that the Vatican by itself proclaimed a novel, heretical innovation as an eternal dogma necessary for salvation is but its first hurdle.

Quote
but polemicists simply bend over backwards to misrepresent the teaching and knock down their straw men.


The objections that the Vatican's son Bernard voiced when this novelty first appeared on the fringe of Christendom I've posted above.  I need only add that all right believing Orthodox (i.e. those not in communion with the Vatican) would subscribe, as I do, to ALL his obejctions to this deviation from the "deposit of Faith."

Quote
I find it really funny when Orthodox post their agreements to these hollow arguments, because the arguments haven't really addressed the teaching itself, but have only been knocking down straw man caricatures of it.

Bernard logically sliced the heresy nicely.  Meat, not straw.

Quote
As it relates to your comments, I would just like to point out 3 things:
1) The Catholic Church recognizes an hierarchy of beliefs wherein some beliefs are more important and necessary for the maintenance of the Faith as others.  The dogma of the IC falls in the lower rungs of that heirarchy of beliefs.

I'd brush up on your Vatican dogmatics: they class it as de fide, i.e. its A-1 rating. Compare:
Quote
105. Jesus Christ is the True God and True Son of God. (De fide.)
155. Mary was conceived without stain of Original sin. (De fide.)
http://jloughnan.tripod.com/dogma.htm

along with the points so aptly raised by AlexanderofBergamo.

Quote
2) The proscription in the dogma is not an anathema (unlike other dogmas), but is a minor excommunication, which itself indicates its status in the hierarchy of beliefs.  So, contrary to what you stated, it is not "a dogma necessary for salvation," at least not like the explicitly Christological dogmas.

Your church teaches otherwise.  Ineffabilis Deus:
Quote
Besides, we must note a fact of the greatest importance indeed. Even the Council of Trent itself, when it promulgated the dogmatic decree concerning original sin, following the testimonies of the Sacred Scriptures, of the Holy Fathers and of the renowned Council, decreed and defined that all men are born infected by original sin; nevertheless, it solemnly declared that it had no intention of including the blessed and immaculate Virgin Mary, the Mother of God, in this decree and in the general extension of its definition. Indeed, considering the times and circumstances, the Fathers of Trent sufficiently intimated by this declaration that the Blessed Virgin Mary was free from the original stain; and thus they clearly signified that nothing could be reasonably cited from the Sacred Scriptures, from Tradition, or from the authority of the Fathers, which would in any way be opposed to so great a prerogative of the Blessed Virgin.
Hence, if anyone shall dare -- which God forbid! -- to think otherwise than as has been defined by us, let him know and understand that he is condemned by his own judgment; that he has suffered shipwreck in the faith; that he has separated from the unity of the Church; and that, furthermore, by his own action he incurs the penalties established by law if he should dare to express in words or writing or by any other outward means the errors he thinks in his heart
http://www.newadvent.org/library/docs_pi09id.htm


Quote
3) The dogma's proscription refers only to those who reject the belief.  I know many Orthodox who believe the teaching, though only as theologoumenon


They are mistaken.  In fact, most Latins don't know what it teaches (even when you eliminate those who confuse it with the Virgin Birth).

Quote
(Bp Timothy Ware himself admits that it can be a legitimate theologoumenon).
 

The good bishop is wrong, as he is on women's ordination and legalized abortion.

Quote
In fact, if Orthodox really want to remain faithful to Tradition, they would not reject the teaching at all, since the substance of the teaching is celebrated in the Feast of the Conception of St. Anne.  

No, it that were true, it woudl be the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, which, as I said, was not celebrated in the first millenium, nor us ever.  That is how you get nonsense like this:
Quote
Questions and Answers:  
Question:  "Is this the official teaching of the Catholic Church?"  
Answer:  The Catholic Church has no official teaching on whether or not the Virgin Mary had a virgin conception and virgin birth. This booklet contains speculative theology, that is, theology on questions not yet decided by the Church.
But I say more. There are ten thousand truths as yet undiscovered within the ancient Deposit of Faith:  Sacred Scripture and Sacred Tradition.

Question:  "Are you saying that Saint Ann was a virgin?"  
Answer:  No, Saint Ann was not a virgin. Saints Ann and Joachim conceived a child in the usual way, the older sister of the Virgin Mary, mentioned in John 19:25. Rather, I am saying that the manner of the Virgin Mary's Immaculate Conception was entirely virginal and miraculous.

Question:  "What are the differences between Mary's conception and Christ's conception?"  
Answer:  (1) Christ is Divine, whereas Mary is merely human. Thus, Christ's conception was an Incarnation, whereas Mary's conception was not an Incarnation.  
(2) Mary was conceived, virginally and miraculously, of both her parents (St. Joachim and St. Ann). Christ was conceived, virginally and miraculously, of only one human parent (the Virgin Mary). This difference indicates that Christ is Divine, with God alone as His Father, whereas Mary is merely human.  
(3) Christ was conceived, virginally and miraculously, of a perfect Virgin. Mary was conceived, virginally and miraculously, of Joachim and Ann, who were not virgins. Joachim and Ann conceived a child years earlier, the older sister of the Virgin Mary (Jn 19:25).

http://www.catholicplanet.com/virgin/index.htm
http://www.catholicplanet.com/virgin/virginity-Jesus-Mary.htm

I'm betting that the Co-redemptrix will be the next of the "ten thousand truths as yet undiscovered within the ancient Deposit of Faith" to be proclaimed as eternal dogma by the Vatican.

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My point is that the dogma does not insist that it be believed as a dogma, but only that it be believed (so one can view it as theologoumenon)

Do I really have to comment here?

I was using the "all graces" language very loosely, and really only meant "the same graces we receive at Baptism."  I was quoting something I read on the Feast of the Conception from an EO source (or perhaps it was Armenian).  I don't think the term "all graces" is even used by the Latin Church.  I think it is simply hyperbolic language (which is pretty common in praises to Mary) and shouldn't be taken too literally.

This is however, EXACTLY what the Vatican has done.  On the one hand, you want to use "'all grace' language very loosely" to preclude the Orthodox from taking the IC to its logical conclusion, while on the other hand want to use it as proof that the Orthodox always believed it.

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As far as your comments on the Forerunner, I would not expect a belief in the IC of John by any stretch of the imagination.  Part of the rationale for the IC is the patristic belief that she was the purest and most immaculate creation of God.  In that sense, I never considered the teaching as being opposed to my Oriental sensibilities.

The problem is that the Vatican's "reasoning" itself into the IC, after her most devoted sons and doctors preached against it, provides the perfect template to argue the same for the Forerunner, even on firmer ground, as Mina shows his conception feast is older and more universal.
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« Reply #120 on: April 09, 2009, 11:47:43 AM »

Does anyone have any sayings from the fathers on this topic?  Just so we can all agree, let's limit these saying to those pre 5th century.
I don't think there are any explicit sayings.  I think the belief came out of a pious meditation on such statements about Mary being the New Eve (extant since the second century), combined with the Church's belief on her being the most perfect creation of God (also just as ancient).  It finally came to fruition, as mentioned, with the establishment of the Feast of the Conception in the Byzantine Church in the 7th or 8th century.  Of course, the Feast is not exactly about her preservation from the stain of original sin

No, it is quite exact.  It has NOTHING on it.

And it is interesting that all the Churches  that claim Apostolic foundation and refer to the Fathers of the first four centuries, and yet it is only the church in Britain that comes up with this, and it is only the Vatican in the Pentarchy who runs with it.

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- it is, rather, about the pious belief that Mary received the graces of the Holy Spirit at her conception.

Can you cite some text from the service in support of this?

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I'm guessing that the belief quickly blossomed into the realization that receiving all the graces of the Holy Spirit (that a creature can receive, that is) is tantamount to receiving Baptism.  So what is the effect of Baptism?  The cleansing of the stain of original sin.

Btw, can you locate when this idea of the IC being equivalent to baptism?  As I don't see it in the sources from the IC's appearance to the proclamation by the Vatican.

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When the Feast migrated to the West, it faced opposition.  What the Latins already believed was that Mary received the graces of the Holy Spirit at the moment of her SPIRITUAL conception (i.e., ensoulment or quickening).  However, unlike the Easterns, the Latins distinguished the moment of ensoulment from the moment of physical conception, believing that ensoulment occurred at least 40 days or more after the physical conception.  Thus, some prominent Saints in the Latin Church opposed the introduction of the Feast in Latin Church.  They could not agree to the idea that she received the graces of the Holy Spirit from the moment of her conception, because they believed she received those graces at least 40 days hence.  As part of their rhetoric against the Eastern Feast, they opined that only Jesus was absolutely pure from the moment of his physical conception because he did not have a human father (from whom original sin was traditionally held to be transmitted).

Would you mind quoting where your Bernard of Clairvaux objected?  You have a lot of his material quoted above.  Did I miss something?

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Eventually, the Latin Church grew to understand, together with the East, that the moment of ensoulment occurs at the same instant as the moment of conception.  Hence, the dogma of the IC.

Nice revisionism, but where is that in your Vatican Fathers?  In Bernard?  In Thomas Aquinas?  In Bonaventure? In Alexander of Hales?

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The above explanation demonstrates that there is no difference between what the medieval Latin Fathers (who opposed the introduction of the Feast into the West) believed and what Catholics today believe - namely, that Mary received all the graces the Holy Spirit at the moment of her ensoulment.  The dogma of the IC uses the word "conception" instead of "ensoulment" simply because both occur at the same time (it's the simple and basic commutative law).

No, unfortunately the above only demonstrates Ultramontanist revisionism in action, in a desperate attempt to save Vatican I.

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There are some things that need to be emphasized about the dogma of the IC that opponents always mispresent (and those misrepresentations are glaringly evident in this thread):

That the application of logic to the IC yields results you don't like doesn't make them misrepresentation.

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1) The dogma does NOT say that Mary was preserved from original sin.  If she was preserved from original sin PERIOD, then she would not only be spiritually pure, but she would also not experience corruption or death.  But that is, as stated, NOT what the dogma states (contrary to the polemical wishes of Father Ambrose).  Rather it says she was preserved from the STAIN of original sin.  As repeatedly explained, the STAIN of original sin refers to the SPIRITUAL CONSEQUENCES of original sin, NOT the PHYSICAL/TACTILE effects of original sin.

I'll wait for your reply to my quotation from the Vatican's ex cathedra pronouncements above on this issue.

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2) The dogma, when it speaks of conception, refers to her SPIRITUAL conception (i.e., ensoulment), not her PHYSICAL conception.  Thus, it is true, and the dogma does not contradict, the teaching of the medieval Latin Fathers that only Jesus had an immaculate PHYSICAL conception.

LOL.  I'm going to leave Father Ambrose the fun of taking this up.

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3) The two points emphasized above evinces that the dogma does not contradict the fact that Mary died.

You mean the "theologoumen" that she died.

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4) The dogma of the IC refers to nothing more nor less than the fact that Mary received the graces of Baptism at the moment of her conception, as already explained fully in an earlier post.

Again, can you cite something official to back this up?

Thank you for your response.  First, I really don't see what the problem is attending a Feast day (on December 8, btw).  Our obligation to worship on Feast days is based on love, not fear.  That's the kind of love for God that the Catholic Church promotes.  Heck, the Latins have DAILY Mass, one of the things I am actually jealous about in the Latin Tradition.

They say it is a mortal sin to miss mass on a "holy day of obligation" your term, not ours.

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Second, if you believe the teaching as theologoumenon, I don't understand the problem.  I see you are thinking of becoming EO.  Let me ask you something.  Do you think that EO are free to disbelieve something that is not dogmatically defined but is otherwise contained in their Tradition?  Is there such a thing as "cafeteria Eastern Orthodoxy"? 
"Cafeteria Catholics" disbelieve things that the Vatican (and the Church) have dogmatically defined.

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Last year, an EO priest on CAF stated that even though the Assumption is not a dogma in his Church, he would refuse communion to an EO who did not believe in the doctrine. 
Fr. Ambrose.  He is well know here and on CAF (and elsewhere).  I don't think he's afraid to say it.

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Considering these things before I became Catholic, I understood that dogmas in the Catholic Church are simply an indication that a belief is really important and much cherished.
LOL.  Yeah, anathema is Latin for "really important" and "much cherished."

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Orthodoxy (Eastern and Oriental) have very important and much cherished doctrines that are not dogmatized, but belief in them are nevertheless viewed as consitutive of one's claim to be Orthodox.  So what if the Latins dogmatized these important and cherished doctrines?  Would they be less important if they were not dogmatized?  I don't think so.  Besides, the prosciption of the dogma, as stated, is not an anathema, but a minor excommunication.
So you say.  Can you cite a canon or something else with the authority of your church on this?

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Lack of belief in it would result in nothing more or less than what that EO priest mentioned he would do if he knew someone coming to him for communion rejected the doctrine of the Assumption of the Theotokos - he would refuse it.  In other words, Catholics and Orthodox both hold beliefs that are very important to them.  Catholics, and Latins in particular, like to dogmatize these doctrines.  But the fact that Orthodox don't dogmatize these same doctrines does not make these doctrine any less important to Orthodox.

The IC is quite unimportant to the Orthodox.
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« Reply #121 on: April 09, 2009, 12:06:25 PM »

Wow! This thread really lends itself to the ad hominen, eh? It does seem to the uninformed follower of all this that both sides are missing the mark on the opposition's arguments. I haven't seen so many knees jerking since lightning hit the football bleachers.

I had always thought that the main objection to immaculate conception was that it was proclaimed as a dogma necessary for salvation and that the Orthodox that it wasn't an essential belief and should not have been proclaimed unilaterally.
That is an astute observation.  As you can see, there is nothing objectionable about the teaching itself,

That's neither true, nor what he said.  The fact that the Vatican by itself proclaimed a novel, heretical innovation as an eternal dogma necessary for salvation is but its first hurdle.
Sure, you are entitled to your ad hominem opinion.

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but polemicists simply bend over backwards to misrepresent the teaching and knock down their straw men.


The objections that the Vatican's son Bernard voiced when this novelty first appeared on the fringe of Christendom I've posted above.  I need only add that all right believing Orthodox (i.e. those not in communion with the Vatican) would subscribe, as I do, to ALL his obejctions to this deviation from the "deposit of Faith."
Bernard logically sliced the heresy nicely.  Meat, not straw.
I already addressed them in my post to brother Marc.  Besides straw men, I forgot to mention the tactic of evasion to which polemicists are so prone.

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As it relates to your comments, I would just like to point out 3 things:
1) The Catholic Church recognizes an hierarchy of beliefs wherein some beliefs are more important and necessary for the maintenance of the Faith as others.  The dogma of the IC falls in the lower rungs of that heirarchy of beliefs.

I'd brush up on your Vatican dogmatics: they class it as de fide, i.e. its A-1 rating. Compare:
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105. Jesus Christ is the True God and True Son of God. (De fide.)
155. Mary was conceived without stain of Original sin. (De fide.)
http://jloughnan.tripod.com/dogma.htm

along with the points so aptly raised by AlexanderofBergamo.[/quote]
Point out the obvious why don't you.  Did I say that the dogma of the IC was not de fide?  No.  All I said was that it is lower on the rung in the hierarchy of beliefs.  Like I said, straw men.

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2) The proscription in the dogma is not an anathema (unlike other dogmas), but is a minor excommunication, which itself indicates its status in the hierarchy of beliefs.  So, contrary to what you stated, it is not "a dogma necessary for salvation," at least not like the explicitly Christological dogmas.

Your church teaches otherwise.  Ineffabilis Deus:
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Besides, we must note a fact of the greatest importance indeed. Even the Council of Trent itself, when it promulgated the dogmatic decree concerning original sin, following the testimonies of the Sacred Scriptures, of the Holy Fathers and of the renowned Council, decreed and defined that all men are born infected by original sin; nevertheless, it solemnly declared that it had no intention of including the blessed and immaculate Virgin Mary, the Mother of God, in this decree and in the general extension of its definition. Indeed, considering the times and circumstances, the Fathers of Trent sufficiently intimated by this declaration that the Blessed Virgin Mary was free from the original stain; and thus they clearly signified that nothing could be reasonably cited from the Sacred Scriptures, from Tradition, or from the authority of the Fathers, which would in any way be opposed to so great a prerogative of the Blessed Virgin.
Hence, if anyone shall dare -- which God forbid! -- to think otherwise than as has been defined by us, let him know and understand that he is condemned by his own judgment; that he has suffered shipwreck in the faith; that he has separated from the unity of the Church; and that, furthermore, by his own action he incurs the penalties established by law if he should dare to express in words or writing or by any other outward means the errors he thinks in his heart
Mmmmm?  Sounds like excommunication to me. Roll Eyes

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3) The dogma's proscription refers only to those who reject the belief.  I know many Orthodox who believe the teaching, though only as theologoumenon


They are mistaken.  In fact, most Latins don't know what it teaches (even when you eliminate those who confuse it with the Virgin Birth).[/quote]
Well, I guess that's why it's theologoumenon. Grin

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(Bp Timothy Ware himself admits that it can be a legitimate theologoumenon).


The good bishop is wrong, as he is on women's ordination and legalized abortion.
In rhetoric, that would be a class of ad hominem otherwise known as "guilt by association."  That's another one polemicsts are prone to.

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In fact, if Orthodox really want to remain faithful to Tradition, they would not reject the teaching at all, since the substance of the teaching is celebrated in the Feast of the Conception of St. Anne. 

No, it that were true, it woudl be the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, which, as I said, was not celebrated in the first millenium, nor us ever.
We add the word "Immaculate" to it and you get into huff.  The substance is the same, but you simply, in your polemic spirit, refuse to recognize it.  St. Paul had something to say about arguing over words, I believe. Grin

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That is how you get nonsense like this:
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Questions and Answers: 
Question:  "Is this the official teaching of the Catholic Church?" 
Answer:  The Catholic Church has no official teaching on whether or not the Virgin Mary had a virgin conception and virgin birth. This booklet contains speculative theology, that is, theology on questions not yet decided by the Church.
But I say more. There are ten thousand truths as yet undiscovered within the ancient Deposit of Faith:  Sacred Scripture and Sacred Tradition.

Question:  "Are you saying that Saint Ann was a virgin?" 
Answer:  No, Saint Ann was not a virgin. Saints Ann and Joachim conceived a child in the usual way, the older sister of the Virgin Mary, mentioned in John 19:25. Rather, I am saying that the manner of the Virgin Mary's Immaculate Conception was entirely virginal and miraculous.

Question:  "What are the differences between Mary's conception and Christ's conception?" 
Answer:  (1) Christ is Divine, whereas Mary is merely human. Thus, Christ's conception was an Incarnation, whereas Mary's conception was not an Incarnation. 
(2) Mary was conceived, virginally and miraculously, of both her parents (St. Joachim and St. Ann). Christ was conceived, virginally and miraculously, of only one human parent (the Virgin Mary). This difference indicates that Christ is Divine, with God alone as His Father, whereas Mary is merely human. 
(3) Christ was conceived, virginally and miraculously, of a perfect Virgin. Mary was conceived, virginally and miraculously, of Joachim and Ann, who were not virgins. Joachim and Ann conceived a child years earlier, the older sister of the Virgin Mary (Jn 19:25).

http://www.catholicplanet.com/virgin/index.htm
http://www.catholicplanet.com/virgin/virginity-Jesus-Mary.htm
[/quote]
Yes, I see.  This easily demonstrates the problem when someone appeals to non-official Catholic sources.  That's another polemical tactic, btw.

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I'm betting that the Co-redemptrix will be the next of the "ten thousand truths as yet undiscovered within the ancient Deposit of Faith" to be proclaimed as eternal dogma by the Vatican.
This particular rhetorical error is known sensationalism.  No basis in fact, but simply exaggerated claims.

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My point is that the dogma does not insist that it be believed as a dogma, but only that it be believed (so one can view it as theologoumenon)

Do I really have to comment here?
No, your rhetorical errors and polemical tactics are becoming glaring and tedious.

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I was using the "all graces" language very loosely, and really only meant "the same graces we receive at Baptism."  I was quoting something I read on the Feast of the Conception from an EO source (or perhaps it was Armenian).  I don't think the term "all graces" is even used by the Latin Church.  I think it is simply hyperbolic language (which is pretty common in praises to Mary) and shouldn't be taken too literally.

This is however, EXACTLY what the Vatican has done.  On the one hand, you want to use "'all grace' language very loosely" to preclude the Orthodox from taking the IC to its logical conclusion, while on the other hand want to use it as proof that the Orthodox always believed it.
Here's another straw man.  I specifically stated that I wasn't even sure the Latin Church uses this term, but now he wants to blame the Vatican for it. And I already stated that I merely meant "the graces we receive at baptism," but now he creates a bunch of intentions for me out of thin air.

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As far as your comments on the Forerunner, I would not expect a belief in the IC of John by any stretch of the imagination.  Part of the rationale for the IC is the patristic belief that she was the purest and most immaculate creation of God.  In that sense, I never considered the teaching as being opposed to my Oriental sensibilities.

The problem is that the Vatican's "reasoning" itself into the IC, after her most devoted sons and doctors preached against it, provides the perfect template to argue the same for the Forerunner, even on firmer ground, as Mina shows his conception feast is older and more universal.
Mmmm?  I didn't know the Forerunner was also designated as the most perfect creation of God.  You learn something new all the time --- NOT!

So what have we learned from brother Isa today.  Nothing really, except that he is prone to rhetorical errors, and uses polemical tactics.

Blessings,
Marduk
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« Reply #122 on: April 09, 2009, 12:47:49 PM »

Dear brother Isa,

Any diligent reader will realize that my prior posts are a sufficient response to your comments here.  So I don't think I need to reinvent the wheel. If any reader wishes further explanation from me, please let me know.

I will respond to your comment on it being a mortal sin to miss a Holy Day of Obligation.  In my opinion, I wish we had more such days.  I don't think we can worship God enough.  I dramatically appreciate the fact that the Latin Church gives access to the Most Holy Eucharist daily, and I avail myself of that Grace when I can. 

Now, I don't know what in the world you are complaining about.  The only reason I can see that you even have an ounce of credibility in your complaint is if the Catholic Church did not offer the Sacrament of Reconciliation.  To me, all you are complaining about is that the Catholic Church gives an INCALCULABLE amount of importance to worshipping God.  Thus, to me, your complaints are, basically, godless.

Blessings,
Marduk

Does anyone have any sayings from the fathers on this topic?  Just so we can all agree, let's limit these saying to those pre 5th century.
I don't think there are any explicit sayings.  I think the belief came out of a pious meditation on such statements about Mary being the New Eve (extant since the second century), combined with the Church's belief on her being the most perfect creation of God (also just as ancient).  It finally came to fruition, as mentioned, with the establishment of the Feast of the Conception in the Byzantine Church in the 7th or 8th century.  Of course, the Feast is not exactly about her preservation from the stain of original sin

No, it is quite exact.  It has NOTHING on it.

And it is interesting that all the Churches  that claim Apostolic foundation and refer to the Fathers of the first four centuries, and yet it is only the church in Britain that comes up with this, and it is only the Vatican in the Pentarchy who runs with it.

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- it is, rather, about the pious belief that Mary received the graces of the Holy Spirit at her conception.

Can you cite some text from the service in support of this?

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I'm guessing that the belief quickly blossomed into the realization that receiving all the graces of the Holy Spirit (that a creature can receive, that is) is tantamount to receiving Baptism.  So what is the effect of Baptism?  The cleansing of the stain of original sin.

Btw, can you locate when this idea of the IC being equivalent to baptism?  As I don't see it in the sources from the IC's appearance to the proclamation by the Vatican.

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When the Feast migrated to the West, it faced opposition.  What the Latins already believed was that Mary received the graces of the Holy Spirit at the moment of her SPIRITUAL conception (i.e., ensoulment or quickening).  However, unlike the Easterns, the Latins distinguished the moment of ensoulment from the moment of physical conception, believing that ensoulment occurred at least 40 days or more after the physical conception.  Thus, some prominent Saints in the Latin Church opposed the introduction of the Feast in Latin Church.  They could not agree to the idea that she received the graces of the Holy Spirit from the moment of her conception, because they believed she received those graces at least 40 days hence.  As part of their rhetoric against the Eastern Feast, they opined that only Jesus was absolutely pure from the moment of his physical conception because he did not have a human father (from whom original sin was traditionally held to be transmitted).

Would you mind quoting where your Bernard of Clairvaux objected?  You have a lot of his material quoted above.  Did I miss something?

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Eventually, the Latin Church grew to understand, together with the East, that the moment of ensoulment occurs at the same instant as the moment of conception.  Hence, the dogma of the IC.

Nice revisionism, but where is that in your Vatican Fathers?  In Bernard?  In Thomas Aquinas?  In Bonaventure? In Alexander of Hales?

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The above explanation demonstrates that there is no difference between what the medieval Latin Fathers (who opposed the introduction of the Feast into the West) believed and what Catholics today believe - namely, that Mary received all the graces the Holy Spirit at the moment of her ensoulment.  The dogma of the IC uses the word "conception" instead of "ensoulment" simply because both occur at the same time (it's the simple and basic commutative law).

No, unfortunately the above only demonstrates Ultramontanist revisionism in action, in a desperate attempt to save Vatican I.

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There are some things that need to be emphasized about the dogma of the IC that opponents always mispresent (and those misrepresentations are glaringly evident in this thread):

That the application of logic to the IC yields results you don't like doesn't make them misrepresentation.

Quote
1) The dogma does NOT say that Mary was preserved from original sin.  If she was preserved from original sin PERIOD, then she would not only be spiritually pure, but she would also not experience corruption or death.  But that is, as stated, NOT what the dogma states (contrary to the polemical wishes of Father Ambrose).  Rather it says she was preserved from the STAIN of original sin.  As repeatedly explained, the STAIN of original sin refers to the SPIRITUAL CONSEQUENCES of original sin, NOT the PHYSICAL/TACTILE effects of original sin.

I'll wait for your reply to my quotation from the Vatican's ex cathedra pronouncements above on this issue.

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2) The dogma, when it speaks of conception, refers to her SPIRITUAL conception (i.e., ensoulment), not her PHYSICAL conception.  Thus, it is true, and the dogma does not contradict, the teaching of the medieval Latin Fathers that only Jesus had an immaculate PHYSICAL conception.

LOL.  I'm going to leave Father Ambrose the fun of taking this up.

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3) The two points emphasized above evinces that the dogma does not contradict the fact that Mary died.

You mean the "theologoumen" that she died.

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4) The dogma of the IC refers to nothing more nor less than the fact that Mary received the graces of Baptism at the moment of her conception, as already explained fully in an earlier post.

Again, can you cite something official to back this up?

Thank you for your response.  First, I really don't see what the problem is attending a Feast day (on December 8, btw).  Our obligation to worship on Feast days is based on love, not fear.  That's the kind of love for God that the Catholic Church promotes.  Heck, the Latins have DAILY Mass, one of the things I am actually jealous about in the Latin Tradition.

They say it is a mortal sin to miss mass on a "holy day of obligation" your term, not ours.

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Second, if you believe the teaching as theologoumenon, I don't understand the problem.  I see you are thinking of becoming EO.  Let me ask you something.  Do you think that EO are free to disbelieve something that is not dogmatically defined but is otherwise contained in their Tradition?  Is there such a thing as "cafeteria Eastern Orthodoxy"? 
"Cafeteria Catholics" disbelieve things that the Vatican (and the Church) have dogmatically defined.

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Last year, an EO priest on CAF stated that even though the Assumption is not a dogma in his Church, he would refuse communion to an EO who did not believe in the doctrine. 
Fr. Ambrose.  He is well know here and on CAF (and elsewhere).  I don't think he's afraid to say it.

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Considering these things before I became Catholic, I understood that dogmas in the Catholic Church are simply an indication that a belief is really important and much cherished.
LOL.  Yeah, anathema is Latin for "really important" and "much cherished."

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Orthodoxy (Eastern and Oriental) have very important and much cherished doctrines that are not dogmatized, but belief in them are nevertheless viewed as consitutive of one's claim to be Orthodox.  So what if the Latins dogmatized these important and cherished doctrines?  Would they be less important if they were not dogmatized?  I don't think so.  Besides, the prosciption of the dogma, as stated, is not an anathema, but a minor excommunication.
So you say.  Can you cite a canon or something else with the authority of your church on this?

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Lack of belief in it would result in nothing more or less than what that EO priest mentioned he would do if he knew someone coming to him for communion rejected the doctrine of the Assumption of the Theotokos - he would refuse it.  In other words, Catholics and Orthodox both hold beliefs that are very important to them.  Catholics, and Latins in particular, like to dogmatize these doctrines.  But the fact that Orthodox don't dogmatize these same doctrines does not make these doctrine any less important to Orthodox.

The IC is quite unimportant to the Orthodox.
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« Reply #123 on: April 09, 2009, 12:49:13 PM »

Dear brother Mina,

I was a frequent lurker at CopticHymns, and I always enjoyed your posts. Smiley  I understand where you are coming from.  I know it never made it into our Tradition.  However, the Feast did manage to become part of the Tradition of our Armenian brethren several centuries ago.

I was using the "all graces" language very loosely, and really only meant "the same graces we receive at Baptism."  I was quoting something I read on the Feast of the Conception from an EO source (or perhaps it was Armenian).  I don't think the term "all graces" is even used by the Latin Church.  I think it is simply hyperbolic language (which is pretty common in praises to Mary) and shouldn't be taken too literally.

As far as your comments on the Forerunner, I would not expect a belief in the IC of John by any stretch of the imagination.  Part of the rationale for the IC is the patristic belief that she was the purest and most immaculate creation of God.  In that sense, I never considered the teaching as being opposed to my Oriental sensibilities.

Blessings,
Marduk

Yes, it's been a while, but I do remember someone in coptichymns.net who was a Coptic Catholic.  Small world.  Smiley

I'm afraid though brother I don't see how this proves the Theotokos was immaculately conceived.  Like I said, the conception of the Forerunner was celebrated probably even as early as to the Apostles themselves.  In addition, if you notice Coptic iconography in the iconostasis, we will ALWAYS have on our left side the Virgin Theotokos holding the baby Christ followed by another icon of the greeting of Archangel Gabriel to the Theotokos followed by another icon of the Archangel Michael trampling on Satan, and on the right side we always will have an icon of Christ the Pantocrator followed by the baptism of Christ by St. John the Forerunner followed by an icon of the patron saint of the altar.  This must ALWAYS occur, and this shows the importance of the core of these icons as the saints (and Christ of course) of highest respect, honor, and veneration.  In order of importance, we have the Theotokos, then the Forerunner, followed by the Archangels (and the patron saint although in general might not be as high is of high importance to the Church itself that bears his/her name).  Specifically the core icons of the Theotokos and the Forerunner and the Archangels carry with it the meaning of the Deisis in Coptic life.  This tells us we have a strong tradition of looking over to the "Blessed among women" Theotokos and the "Greatest among those born of women" as strong sources of intercession, and both are higher than the archangels, angels, principalities, authorities, thrones, and dominions.  

What makes the Theotokos greater than the Forerunner is very simply the fact that our Lord God and Savior Jesus Christ took flesh from her.  It is through her own flesh our Lord became incarnate.  He was also nourished and cared for by her not merely as a mother would any son, but the best mother.  Yes, she is even typified as an allegory to the Church Herself.  Nevertheless, we should not forget important role of the Forerunner, preparing the way for the Lord, making His ways straight.  The beginning of Christ's ministry was immediately after the baptism of Christ.  The Forerunner thus is also considered the "Friend of the Bridegroom," who presented Christ to the Church as a best man would while the Theotokos becomes the Mother of the Church through this mystical marriage.  He is also the junction of the Old Testament and the New Testament, the end of the Leviticus priesthood and the beginning of the Melchizedek priesthood, as she was marked the end of chauvinism and the beginning of female empowerment.  And like the Theotokos, he was a son of righteous parents.  Like the Theotokos, he was raised and tended by angels, with the exception that the Theotokos was in the altar while he was in the wilderness who moved the altar away from the Temple to Christ, the True Temple.  She represented the celibacy that lives among the world while he represented the celibacy of the monastic call to live in the wilderness, the other worldly struggle.

The parallels in the lives of both the Theotokos and the Forerunner is not something to be ignored.  They are both the most immaculate and most perfect and greatest of all creatures and the closest to the heart of the Logos Incarnate.  The tradition is strong that veneration to both the Theotokos and the Forerunner seems to have parallel even if slightly unequal roles.  They are the only saints in the whole Church to which we celebrate the conception, the birth, and the departure, with the exception of the Theotokos who we celebrate the Assumption as well, whereas John enjoys his angelic nature, as he is prophesied as the "angel" coming to make the Lord's ways straight, which is also why there is an iconographic tradition of his "wings".

I am unconvinced at this point of the IC if it is not also extended to St. John the Forerunner.

I also recommend that you read this book to enrich your Oriental tradition:

http://www.svspress.com/product_info.php?products_id=190

God bless.
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« Reply #124 on: April 09, 2009, 01:34:49 PM »

Dear brother Mina,

I certainly honor the Forerunner as much as any Copt.  However, though I agree with and understand the differences you have indicated, I would not call them "slight" but "few."  More specifically, I would say they are few, but big differences. 

To be honest, my only purpose on this thread was/is simply to show what the dogma of the IC IS, to combat false rhetoric about it.  I am not out to PROVE it happened, nor the "how" or "why" of the matter.  In fact, the dogma itself does not have that intention.  The dogma simply states what is.  In the "swim across the Tiber," I had actually set out to DISprove the dogma to myself.  But to do that, I knew that I had to find out exactly what it was I was trying to disprove.  However, in the process of trying to find out exactly what it was, and not filtered through the opinions of non-Catholics, I came to the conclusion that the teaching does not contradict my Coptic Faith.  My discussions on this thread is a basically faithful record of what I went through in my mind before I came to accept the teaching.  The hardest part was the free-will issue, and accepting that as creatures, we can be spiritually purified without having to be physically purified.  That is obviously a dramatically basic tenet of Christian anthropology, but for some reason, I had blinders on when it came to Mary (just like some of our EO brethren here who keep claiming that just because Mary was spiritually purified, then that means she could not have died).

At most, what I want to do here is demonstrate that it is not heresy, not convince someone of its truth.

Blessings,
Marduki

Yes, it's been a while, but I do remember someone in coptichymns.net who was a Coptic Catholic.  Small world.  Smiley

I'm afraid though brother I don't see how this proves the Theotokos was immaculately conceived.  Like I said, the conception of the Forerunner was celebrated probably even as early as to the Apostles themselves.  In addition, if you notice Coptic iconography in the iconostasis, we will ALWAYS have on our left side the Virgin Theotokos holding the baby Christ followed by another icon of the greeting of Archangel Gabriel to the Theotokos followed by another icon of the Archangel Michael trampling on Satan, and on the right side we always will have an icon of Christ the Pantocrator followed by the baptism of Christ by St. John the Forerunner followed by an icon of the patron saint of the altar.  This must ALWAYS occur, and this shows the importance of the core of these icons as the saints (and Christ of course) of highest respect, honor, and veneration.  In order of importance, we have the Theotokos, then the Forerunner, followed by the Archangels (and the patron saint although in general might not be as high is of high importance to the Church itself that bears his/her name).  Specifically the core icons of the Theotokos and the Forerunner and the Archangels carry with it the meaning of the Deisis in Coptic life.  This tells us we have a strong tradition of looking over to the "Blessed among women" Theotokos and the "Greatest among those born of women" as strong sources of intercession, and both are higher than the archangels, angels, principalities, authorities, thrones, and dominions.  

What makes the Theotokos greater than the Forerunner is very simply the fact that our Lord God and Savior Jesus Christ took flesh from her.  It is through her own flesh our Lord became incarnate.  He was also nourished and cared for by her not merely as a mother would any son, but the best mother.  Yes, she is even typified as an allegory to the Church Herself.  Nevertheless, we should not forget important role of the Forerunner, preparing the way for the Lord, making His ways straight.  The beginning of Christ's ministry was immediately after the baptism of Christ.  The Forerunner thus is also considered the "Friend of the Bridegroom," who presented Christ to the Church as a best man would while the Theotokos becomes the Mother of the Church through this mystical marriage.  He is also the junction of the Old Testament and the New Testament, the end of the Leviticus priesthood and the beginning of the Melchizedek priesthood, as she was marked the end of chauvinism and the beginning of female empowerment.  And like the Theotokos, he was a son of righteous parents.  Like the Theotokos, he was raised and tended by angels, with the exception that the Theotokos was in the altar while he was in the wilderness who moved the altar away from the Temple to Christ, the True Temple.  She represented the celibacy that lives among the world while he represented the celibacy of the monastic call to live in the wilderness, the other worldly struggle.

The parallels in the lives of both the Theotokos and the Forerunner is not something to be ignored.  They are both the most immaculate and most perfect and greatest of all creatures and the closest to the heart of the Logos Incarnate.  The tradition is strong that veneration to both the Theotokos and the Forerunner seems to have parallel even if slightly unequal roles.  They are the only saints in the whole Church to which we celebrate the conception, the birth, and the departure, with the exception of the Theotokos who we celebrate the Assumption as well, whereas John enjoys his angelic nature, as he is prophesied as the "angel" coming to make the Lord's ways straight, which is also why there is an iconographic tradition of his "wings".

I am unconvinced at this point of the IC if it is not also extended to St. John the Forerunner.

God bless.
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« Reply #125 on: April 09, 2009, 01:44:50 PM »

But dear Marduk, free will is an issue, not ontologically, but in a pragmatic sense, as I mentioned before.  This obviously forces her to choose to be the Theotokos, not allowing her the freedom to choose.  What if she decided not to become the Theotokos?  Surely, there is no fault in her for doing that, and yet should her immaculateness be taken away because of such a choice that seems faultless?

Can you also address Leo's quote that I posted before?

And since you are Coptic who left the Orthodox Church, I'm very much interested in reading your points on these particular issues I posted before to Papist.  Surely, you have read Leo's quote and thought about the free will issue extensively as I am right now.
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« Reply #126 on: April 09, 2009, 03:39:04 PM »

I believe that Mary not because of original sin but because her life was completely in conformity to that of her son, who died and most definitely did not posses original sin.

Dear Papist, you stated earlier that you have a mathematical mind and that is why you are so suited to Latinism.   But your statement above shows the opposite.  Firstly you must be aware that you are giving a private opinion and not the teaching of your Church.  No Pope has promulgated the "conformity" doctrine.

We know from the Catechism (1018)*  that anybody without original sin is immune to bodily death.

You contend that because Christ did His Mother was obliged to die too.

This is a problem because 1) no Pope has declared this and 2) the Catechism teaches that she was immune to bodily death.

So the question is:   HOW did she who could not die, die?   If God had decided that she had to die to conform to her Son, did He actually kill her?  How did He kill her?  How does your theory deal with this?


You know, if it weren't for the fact that we are speaking of humanity's most sacred personages, this would be uproariously funny!

-------------------
* CCC 1018: As a consequence of original sin, man must suffer "bodily death, from which man would have been immune had he not sinned.
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« Reply #127 on: April 09, 2009, 03:49:25 PM »

Not to derail this thread, and I don't think I am; but what is the The Quasi-Incarnation of the Spirit that you speak of? I can't seem to find anything about it. God Bless!

Dear Nicholas,

Plug this into a search engine and start reading.   Smiley

site:forums.catholic.com quasi-incarnation
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« Reply #128 on: April 09, 2009, 04:27:05 PM »


Dear Marduk,

As Isa takes your lengthy statements and examines each of the points you make it becomes obvious that you have only a very shaky house of cards.

I at least am basing what I am saying on the infallible definition of the magisterial statement Munificentissimus Deus and on the Catechism.

But you are presenting only what you are spinning out of your own mind, making distinctions which have no formulation in authentic Catholic teaching, making seriously erroneous statements about the de fide status of the Immaculate Conception, etc., etc.

In no case have you correlated any of your personal mindspin to anything from Catholic theologians and nor have you have substantiated anything with any papal statements.  Readers should be cautioned about this and examine with care what you present as Catholic teaching.

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« Reply #129 on: April 09, 2009, 04:42:22 PM »

Last year, an EO priest on CAF stated that even though the Assumption is not a dogma in his Church, he would refuse communion to an EO who did not believe in the doctrine. 
Fr. Ambrose.  He is well know here and on CAF (and elsewhere).  I don't think he's afraid to say it.

Marduk, depite his vociferous claims to preserve his Coptic Orthodox phronema, most frequently speaks and argues from a Roman Catholic mindset and we see that in this instance.

It is simply not a question of making a distinction between dogma and doctrine.  This is supremely unimportant to the East.  It is the tradition which must be upheld in its entirety - whether it be oral tradition or that which has been carefully explicated at Councils and Synods or that taught by the holy Fathers.

We have no "dogma" (in the Latin sense used by Marduk, a magisterial definition) about the Dormition and Assumption.  We don't even have a "dogma" about the presence of Christ in the Eucharist.  But in both instances you will find an Orthodox priest will deny Communion if told by a communicant that he denies them.
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« Reply #130 on: April 09, 2009, 06:59:25 PM »

Dear brother Mina,

But dear Marduk, free will is an issue, not ontologically, but in a pragmatic sense, as I mentioned before.  This obviously forces her to choose to be the Theotokos, not allowing her the freedom to choose.  What if she decided not to become the Theotokos?  Surely, there is no fault in her for doing that, and yet should her immaculateness be taken away because of such a choice that seems faultless?
I believe I addressed this fully earlier. I don't know if you read them, but can you please look at my posts #5, 10, 15, 19, and 20.  Does that answer your question about free will?  But perhaps you are adding another dimension to the issue - i.e., the issue of predestination.  What I have addressed so far on the issue of free will relates to the question - "Does the fact that Mary had no concupiscence mean she did not have the free will to sin?"  I think what you are asking now is (in distinction) - "Does her being chosen by God to be the Mother of God mean she did not have the free will to resist?"  If the latter, then the usual understanding of the Churches on the matter should suffice - that predestination according to the Catholic and Orthodox understanding - refers to God's foreknowledge, not that God forces anyone to do something in the future.  If the former, then I believe I have sufficiently addressed it.

Quote
Can you also address Leo's quote that I posted before?
Sorry I missed that earlier, I skipped a whole bunch of posts close to the time when everyone started debating about the immortalist understanding of brother Papist. Grin

To be honest, I'd never pondered those statements before.  I don't see what it has to do with our topic.  I think the very first sentence demonstrates the purpose of the excerpt - namely, how was the chain of sin and death broken.  The obvious and only answer is Jesus Christ.  I notice that the sermon specifically states that righteousness itself springs from the Nativity of Christ.  Those are the considerations I would bring to bear on trying to interpret the final sentence you highlighted.  The sin which the sacred conception overthrew is the sin of humanity (actual and original), the sin that is washed away at Baptism.  I believe this is a classic example of hyperbole to indicate the role of Christ as our Savior.  We all know that the actual moment of our sins being overthrown was at the Cross.  However, it is also true that Christ himself is salvation itself.  Pope St. Leo was simply teaching that very concept (that Christ himself is salvation itself) by stating that sin (the sin that is washed away at baptism) was overthrown from the first instance that His Person came into the world (i.e., the Incarnation) in His mother's womb (which lines up perfectly with his earlier statement that righteousness comes from the Nativity).----------- It just dawned on me what your actual point probably is - namely, is the "sin" mentioned in that final sentence referring to the sin in Mary?  I suppose if one plucked that sentence out of the excerpt and presented it to someone, one could come to that conclusion.  But I think the context leaves no doubt that the sin being spoken about in the last sentence is the sin of the world.

I'm not sure how the "impure seed" idea relates to our discussion. Perhaps you can explain that a bit more.

Quote
And since you are Coptic who left the Orthodox Church, I'm very much interested in reading your points on these particular issues I posted before to Papist.  Surely, you have read Leo's quote and thought about the free will issue extensively as I am right now.
To be honest, I regard myself as an Orthodox in communion with Rome.  As I mentioned in another post in these Forums, my translation to Catholicism was not a matter of me rejecting anything of my Coptic Orthodox heritage, but simply a matter of rejecting my heretofore MISconceptions about Catholicism. But that's a big topic that I'm sure would deserve a thread of its own.

Blessings,
Marduk
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« Reply #131 on: April 09, 2009, 07:06:09 PM »

Not to derail this thread, and I don't think I am; but what is the The Quasi-Incarnation of the Spirit that you speak of? I can't seem to find anything about it. God Bless!

Dear Nicholas,

Plug this into a search engine and start reading.   Smiley

site:forums.catholic.com quasi-incarnation
Yeah, it's pretty silly, both in its concept and the polemical use of it by non-Catholics.  It's like - "OMG, I heard my Catholic grandma today say angels have real bodies.  That must mean it's offical teaching in the Catholic Church now!"  Polemicists are a pretty silly bunch that shouldn't be taken TOO seriously.  I would love to say "shouldn't be taken seriously PERIOD," but it is a fact that polemecists do manage to lead people astray.
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« Reply #132 on: April 09, 2009, 07:27:14 PM »


As Isa takes your lengthy statements and examines each of the points you make it becomes obvious that you have only a very shaky house of cards.
Or maybe it's that his statements are really just copious examples of invalid arguments that they're not really worth a hoot.  It's a case of the boy who cried wolf. When all the arguments have been hollow so far, it's a good bet the rest will be the same.  As stated, a diligent reader will realize my prior posts are sufficient responses to brother Isa's arguments. Face it, brother Isa is a polemicist, not an apologist.  He'll just tweak an argument a little bit to make people think he has made a new point, when the "new" point has in fact already been refuted back down the chain of arguments.  And I've offered individual readers an opportunity to ask specific questions.  I do try to distinguishing between baiting questions and honest questions for the sake of genuine dialogue.  Unfortunately, comments from polemicists are not really meant to promote dialogue, but really serve no other purpose than to try to stir people's emotions or get under your skin - really nothing worth responding to, as any sensible reader might observe from many of the posts from the non-Catholic participants here.

Quote
I at least am basing what I am saying on the infallible definition of the magisterial statement Munificentissimus Deus and on the Catechism.
Sorry.  I looked over it, and I simply could not find any place in Munificentissimus Deus that claims that Mary was "preserved from original sin." Either you're working off of a non-Catholic copy that is not an actual translation but rather an interpretation, or you're just trying to purposefully mislead people (which I hope is not the case).

Quote
But you are presenting only what you are spinning out of your own mind, making distinctions which have no formulation in authentic Catholic teaching, making seriously erroneous statements about the de fide status of the Immaculate Conception, etc., etc.
Yes, the usual claim when polemicists can't respond to what the Church ACTUALLY teaches.  That's why polemicists need to make straw men. Wink

Quote
In no case have you correlated any of your personal mindspin to anything from Catholic theologians and nor have you have substantiated anything with any papal statements.  Readers should be cautioned about this and examine with care what you present as Catholic teaching.
Really?  Or maybe I have, but you just didn't notice them (or maybe purposefully evaded them).  I'll leave you to find my reference to Council of Trent's doctrine on original sin.  Anyone who's willing to agree with your arguments probably won't care what the Catholic Church ACTUALLY teaches anyway, but are merely content in knocking down their straw men.

Humbly,
Marduk
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« Reply #133 on: April 09, 2009, 07:34:57 PM »

Sorry I missed that earlier, I skipped a whole bunch of posts close to the time when everyone started debating about the immortalist understanding of brother Papist. Grin

To be honest, I'd never pondered those statements before.  I don't see what it has to do with our topic.  I think the very first sentence demonstrates the purpose of the excerpt - namely, how was the chain of sin and death broken.  The obvious and only answer is Jesus Christ.  I notice that the sermon specifically states that righteousness itself springs from the Nativity of Christ.  Those are the considerations I would bring to bear on trying to interpret the final sentence you highlighted.  The sin which the sacred conception overthrew is the sin of humanity (actual and original), the sin that is washed away at Baptism.  I believe this is a classic example of hyperbole to indicate the role of Christ as our Savior.  We all know that the actual moment of our sins being overthrown was at the Cross.  However, it is also true that Christ himself is salvation itself.  Pope St. Leo was simply teaching that very concept (that Christ himself is salvation itself) by stating that sin (the sin that is washed away at baptism) was overthrown from the first instance that His Person came into the world (i.e., the Incarnation) in His mother's womb (which lines up perfectly with his earlier statement that righteousness comes from the Nativity).----------- It just dawned on me what your actual point probably is - namely, is the "sin" mentioned in that final sentence referring to the sin in Mary?  I suppose if one plucked that sentence out of the excerpt and presented it to someone, one could come to that conclusion.  But I think the context leaves no doubt that the sin being spoken about in the last sentence is the sin of the world.

I'm not sure how the "impure seed" idea relates to our discussion. Perhaps you can explain that a bit more.

Well, concerning the "impure seed," I'm not sure personally either, but I was personally interpreting that as Christ who did not want to inherit the seed of old, the seed of generations in sin, but presented to us a new Seed, to be the firstborn among the saved, and that we would inherit Christ's seed through baptism.  But then again, I'm not sure if that's what Leo intended.  I do want to point out however that according to Coptic teaching, the point of Christ being born a Virgin was not that virginity is "cleaner" than marriage, as I sometimes get the feeling some teach, but that precisely He wants to become the Firstborn, the First Seed of the New Covenant.  I'm not sure if that's your belief, but we reject any idea that being born of a Virgin lead to some incorruptibility of Christ's humanity.

As for the alternative interpretation, thank you for that.  That actually puts things in perspective for me.  I guess this will be a homework for me to read some of Leo's works.

Quote
To be honest, I regard myself as an Orthodox in communion with Rome.  As I mentioned in another post in these Forums, my translation to Catholicism was not a matter of me rejecting anything of my Coptic Orthodox heritage, but simply a matter of rejecting my heretofore MISconceptions about Catholicism. But that's a big topic that I'm sure would deserve a thread of its own.

Blessings,
Marduk

I don't mean to offend you in any way.  Nevertheless, I think that by confessing the IC, you are dogmatically in contradiction to Oriental Orthodox tradition.  For we have no one in our tradition that confesses the IC, and the one saint I know that mentioned anything about a cleansing from Original Sin would be St. Jacob of Serugh, whose book I recommend reading, as is filled with amazing spirituality about the Theotokos.  He is in direct conflict with your beliefs in that he implies the Theotokos was born like anyone else, in Original Sin, and that the taking of away of such happened when the Holy Spirit cleansed her at that moment after the greeting of Gabriel in preparation of the Divine Incarnation.  Surely, if you consider yourself "Orthodox" then you and Coptic Orthodox Church, even the whole Oriental Orthodox communion, have different meanings of what "Orthodox" is.

God bless.
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« Reply #134 on: April 09, 2009, 07:35:14 PM »

Last year, an EO priest on CAF stated that even though the Assumption is not a dogma in his Church, he would refuse communion to an EO who did not believe in the doctrine. 
Fr. Ambrose.  He is well know here and on CAF (and elsewhere).  I don't think he's afraid to say it.

Marduk, depite his vociferous claims to preserve his Coptic Orthodox phronema, most frequently speaks and argues from a Roman Catholic mindset and we see that in this instance.
I am Catholic, make no mistake about it.  I do use Catholic terminology, but that is all they are - terminology.  Just because I call a group of beliefs dogma, and another group of beliefs doctrines..... well, I guess that's condemnable in your eyes.  What was that St. Paul said about needlessly arguing about words?

Quote
It is simply not a question of making a distinction between dogma and doctrine.  This is supremely unimportant to the East.  It is the tradition which must be upheld in its entirety - whether it be oral tradition or that which has been carefully explicated at Councils and Synods or that taught by the holy Fathers.

We have no "dogma" (in the Latin sense used by Marduk, a magisterial definition) about the Dormition and Assumption.  We don't even have a "dogma" about the presence of Christ in the Eucharist.  But in both instances you will find an Orthodox priest will deny Communion if told by a communicant that he denies them.
Ummmm....That's exactly what I said.Huh  Wow, you just really love to knock down straw men, Father.

Humbly,
Marduk
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