Who is Mary

“Holy Mary, Mother of God, you have given the world in its true light, Jesus, your son — the Son of God. You abandoned yourself completely to God’s call and thus became a wellspring of the goodness, which flows forth from him. Show us Jesus. Lead us to Him. Teach Us to Know and love Him, so that we too can become capable of true love and the fountains of living water in the midst of a thirsting world.”


She was a humble girl from an ordinary Jewish family. Yet Mary came to be exalted as the daughter of Zion, the Mother of God, the Queen of Heaven. All because the simple girl said a simple word: Yes.


Biblical References


Mary appears in the following incidents in the Gospels:


  • The Annunciation (Luke 1:26-38)

  • The Visitation with Elizabeth (Luke 1:39)

  • The Birth of Jesus (Luke 2:1-7)

  • The Presentation at the Temple (Luke 2:22-38)

  • The flight to Egypt (Matthew 2:12-15)

  • Finding of Jesus in the Temple (Luke 2:41-50)

  • The marriage at Cana in Galilee (John 2:1-12)

  • The attempt to see Jesus while he was teaching (Mark 3:31-35)

  • The station at the Cross (John 19:26-27)

Titles of Mary - Biblical & Dogmatic


Mother of Jesus Christ


Catholics honor Mary because God has honored her by choosing her to be the Mother of Jesus Christ. This role of Mary was prefigured and foretold in the Old Testament. In the New Testament, even though Mary is not spoken of at length, she is mentioned at many of the central points in the life of Jesus Christ. The infancy narratives, especially in the Gospel of Luke, focus on God’s call to Mary to accept the role as the “Mother of Jesus Christ”. Mary’s response to God is seen fully in her great prayer of praise, the “Magnificat”. The Magnificat is an acknowledgment of the great blessing given by God to Mary as the Mother of Jesus Christ.


Mother of The Church


This is the title proclaimed by Pope Paul VI in 1964 at the close of the third session of the Second Vatican Council. The pontiff declared Mary as “Mother of the Church”, meaning Mother of the whole people of God. Later, Pope John Paul II inserted this title in the Litany of the Blessed Virgin Mary.




This title is used in reference to Mary’s role as a Mediator. Because Mary is our Mother, she is committed to pray and intercede for each of her children and for the Church. Catholic tradition has described a number of different titles to Mary to describe her role of intercession – Advocate, Helper, Mediatrix and others. Mary is a Mediatrix between Jesus Christ and humankind. However, it is understood that Jesus Christ is the one mediator between God The Father and humankind.


Mary, Mother of God


All doctrines concerning Mary are related to, and emerge from, our understanding of her son, Jesus Christ. Jesus was truly God as well as man and Mary was his mother. Therefore, it is perfectly fitting to speak of Mary as the Mother of God. The Bible also confirms that Mary is the Mother of God. In the Gospel of Luke, Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit and greets Mary, as “The Mother of My Lord”.




“Theotokos” (Bearer of God) is Mary’s principal title in the Church, and it has been used by the Church for more than a century. The Second Vatican Council stated: “from the earliest times the Blessed Virgin is honored under the title of “Mother of God”.

© 2020 by Robert Barnett