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St. Mary, Mother of God

Born: n/a

Died: n/a

Feast: January 1

Patron saint of: all humanity

Miriam was a young Jewish woman, most likely between the ages of 12 and 14, when she is first introduced in the gospels. Considering the short life expectancy and the fact that the ancient world was thoroughly patriarchal, it is not surprising that she would have a marriage arranged at a very early age. The contemporary idea of marrying for romantic love was not a norm. Marriage was considered a transfer of property that benefited both families. In this context, Miriam’s consent to God’s plan is an act of bravery. As the gospels point out, she is engaged when she becomes pregnant with a child that is not Joseph’s. Her society would have seen this as shameful, and it may have negatively affected her ability to survive. Mary faced many risks when telling the angel yes. Nevertheless, she persisted. She freely and without coercion consented to be a cocreator with God. And she became a prophet, a leader, and the mother of our salvation.

Kevin P. Considine

More about St. Mary, Mother of God:

How Catholics’ love for Mary shaped church teaching

Most Marian stories come from tradition, not scripture.

Could Mary have said ‘No’?

Mary faced many risks when telling the angel yes. Nevertheless, she persisted.

8 faces of Mary to call on in prayer

One of Mary’s greatest gifts is the variety of ways in which she reveals herself.

Where do we get the Marian dogmas?

The dogmas of the Immaculate Conception and Assumption of Mary are relatively new, but the pious attitudes that inspired them are ancient.

This new year, give your heart to the mystery of God

Follow Mary’s example and ponder God’s words wrapped in silence.

Why do Catholics hail Mary?

Mary added zest to the church scene.

Even more on Mary, Mother of God: uscatholic.org/tags/mary.

Image: Flickr cc via Lawrence OP