The Virgin Mary In the Life of The Church

(By Bishop Elías Samuel Bolaños, sdb.)

The Blessed Virgin Mary is present and accompanies the Church, the community of disciples, from her birth.

That is why the book of Acts of the Apostles tells us “that Mary and the apostles persevered in prayer” (Acts 1:14), to confirm, first that Mary shared with the first community of disciples and that she received with them the Holy Spirit at Pentecost.

For Pentecostal Christians it means the beginning of the constitution of the Church or community because the Spirit unites the dispersed peoples and languages. It brings together the men of all peoples and nations.

That is why the peoples are named, because it is the Spirit that makes an only people, only one Church, “everyone heard them speak in their own language.” The dispersion of Babel ended. The Church began, the new people, the new man, the new humanity emerged by the breath of the Holy Spirit.

And there was Mary, as well as at the beginning of the new order, with the Incarnation of the Son of God. Mary is the protagonist, the mediator of God, so that her Son assumes our condition. At the beginning of the new chosen people, Mary is present and encourages the new, the “ecclesia” new, the new humanity filled with the Spirit of God.

On the cross, Mary is given to John, like his mother. John took her to his home. Mary will always be in the house, in the community, in the temple. The house of Mary in Nazareth is one of the first centers of pilgrimage and veneration for the disciples.

The first Councils, when the Bishops could meet, had to discuss and define the mystery of the Incarnation, the being of Jesus, Son of God and son of man. With this they also had to discuss the intervention, the presence and the purpose of Mary. The conclusion and definition to which they came was: Mary is the “Theotokos,” the Mother of the Son of God and the Mother of God.

This motherhood Mary has exercised very discreetly. Visiting the towns and cities in every corner of the earth, we find images and titles of the Blessed Virgin Mary, who appeared in many ways and forms.

At the beginning of the evangelization of these peoples, who took her as a true mother present and encouraging the nascent church in the different towns and countries; thus, emerging the diverse expressions of the so-called “popular religiosity,” which is a way of extending the community of disciples of Jesus in all the towns and places of the earth.

Of course, one of the strongest and symbolic manifestations of this presence of the Virgin in the history of the emergence and consolidation of the Church, born on Pentecost, is the appearance of the Virgin of Guadalupe. But apparitions and manifestations of the Blessed Virgin in so many towns and countries. With this, the Virgin has fulfilled her role as Mother and accompanies and cares for her children, the new communities or “ecclesiae” of the whole world.

Thus, the Virgin has accompanied and is present in the Church, in the community of disciples, with the traits and faces typical of all peoples, because the Church is made up of “men of every race, language and nation ...” Thus, the Blessed Virgin Mary has assumed the face of every race and nation because she is the home of all the disciples of Jesus.

Particularly in the month of May, the Church scattered in all nations, expresses her love and devotion to Mary with so many expressions of true filial love, because Mary is feeling her at home, because she has visited us, as she visited in her home to his cousin Isabel.

The Virgin protect us, the whole Church, with her maternal mantle. Amen.

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