Praying to Mary


      While the scriptures do not teach "immaculate conception" (the dogma that Mary was sinless), Mary, the mother of Jesus, "found favor with God (Lk. 1: 30). Elisabeth said of Mary: "Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb" (Lk. 1: 42). There is no justification for doubting the general goodness of Mary.

     We are taught to pray to the Father. The scriptures are explicit in the matter of prayer. Jesus taught: "After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven…" (Matt. 6: 9-15). Jesus is the advocate for the Christian (I Jn. 2: 1). He is also said to be the mediator between God and man (I Tim. 2: 5). The Holy Spirit's role in prayer is making "intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered" (Rom. 8: 26).

     We are not to think above what is written. Beloved, the scriptures constitute our belief system (2 Tit. 3: 16, 17). Moreover, we are warned not to think above what is written (I Cor. 4: 6, notice "of men" in the King James has been supplied). The scriptures teach prayer is addressed to the Father, as seen, nothing is taught about prayer to Mary. Furthermore, Paul emphasized there is "one mediator between God and man, the man Christ Jesus" (I Tim. 2: 5).

     Of course, there are numerous arguments for praying to Mary. "Mary can exert special influence on her Son, Jesus, who can influence the Father," we are told. Then there is the numbers argument, "The millions who pray to Mary cannot be wrong." The emotional argument is, "I just feel it is permissible to pray to Mary."

     In case any doubt that prayer to Mary is taught and practiced, allow me to quote an actual prayer found on a Catholic Web site.  This particular prayer is titled "Prayer to Mary for a Good Mind."

     "O Mary, my Mother, I offer you my soul, my mind, and my heart. Make of me God's instrument. Give me a penetrating mind to discover, firm to judge, open to understand, free to serve the truth; an honest mind in telling what it sees rather than what it wants to see; a tolerant mind which does not dictate to other people, but which explain what it sees clearly; a mind infused by the light and the truth of your Son Jesus, patient in faith, while waiting for the vision of eternal life. Amen."   (Translated and adapted from Fernand Lelotte, S.J., Rabboni, Consignes et prieres pour mieux servir (Paris, Casterman, 1958).

     Beloved, when we lay aside all human reasoning, argumentation, and teaching, and just allow the scriptures to speak, there is not a particle of authority for praying to Mary. There is no apostolic example, no command, and no necessary inference. Hence, praying to Mary is an unauthorized act (2 Jn. 9-11). To those who love God and want to please him, an unauthorized act is serious and something to be avoided (I Jn. 5: 3, I Pet. 4: 11).