Immaculate Mary

From the beginning of history there is no other topic of controversy that has been discussed as much as the birth of Jesus Christ. Let us recall the words of Simeon during the presentation when Jesus was taken to the temple. “Then Simeon blessed them and said to Mary, his mother: “This child is destined to cause the falling and rising of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be spoken against” (Luke 2:34).

The same way Mother Mary is also a topic of discussion and debate. The reason for this debate her divine motherhood and the divine blessings and gifts bestowed on her. The most important gift of all is that she is born without the original sin. Like Jesus, his mother is also born without sin. Every individual who wants lead a good life is often tempted by sin.

As per the teachings of the Catholic Church there are 2 types of sins that make its influence on every human being. That is the Original Sin Actual sin.

Original sin is something that a person is born with whereas the venial sin is a result of our human acts. The seeds of Original sins are ingrained in us from our birth. To a greater extend it is the Original sin which is behind a person committing the actuall sins.

What is Original sin?

When Adam ate the forbidden fruit, sin entered in his life and the sin passed on his descendants as well. And the words of Lamech the son of Abel bears witness to this fact. “If Cain is avenged seven times, then Lamech seventy-seven times (Gen 4: 24).”

We hear the Psalmists crying this, “Surely I was sinful at birth, sinful from the time my mother conceived me” (Psalm 51:5). Even St Paul rants about the effect of original sin in our lives. “I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. 16 And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good. As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me” (Romans 7:15-17). Thus the sins which is passed on from Adam from generations to generations is called original sin.

Even though we are all born with the original sin we also have an opportunity to absolve ourselves from this sin and that is through the sacrament of baptism. The baptism denotes our Jesus being crucified with our sins. In short when a person is baptized his original sin and actual sins are absolved.

Immaculate Conception of Mother Mary

The early Church had accepted the Immaculate Conception of Mary widely. But it was Pope Pious IX in the year 1854 on 8th December declared the Immaculate Conception as a Catholic dogma. As the mother of God and by the grace of God, Mother Mary was absolved from the original sin from the time of her conception. The Bible bears witness to this fact and there is a reference in Genesis 3:15, “And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring[a] and hers; he will crush your head, and you will strike his heel.”

St Ambrose in the 4th century proclaims that Mother Mary has been absolved from the original sins. Eve the first woman was born without sin but by her action the sin entered her life. But the second Eve, Mother Mary was protected from her conception from mortal and venial sins. Pope Sixtus IV, Alexander VII, Clement XII all were ambassadors of this dogma.

It was during the phase when the Church was practicing this dogma, Mother Mary herself informed the world about this. On March 25th in the year 1858 when she appeared before St. Bernadine in Lourdes and proclaimed that she was Immaculate Conception. Her proclamation 4 years later was to authenticate the dogma declared by Pope Pious XII in the year 1854. Let us surrender ourselves to the immaculate heart of Mary and pray for sinful nature and seek the protection of Mother Mary.

Let us pray. Mother Mary who crushed the head of the serpent we surrender ourselves and the whole world to your Immaculate heart. Mother Mary born without the original sin, protect us from the temptations of sins.

Jairaj Vazhithala