Friday, June 12, 2009

Time for another list, and so:

The Five Creepiest (no offense) Aspects of the Rosary/Mariology For Sympathetic, But Questioning Protestants:

5. The Rosary's length and repetition. [Protestant Slogan: "Liturgy is Bad." And, "Anyone Who Prays The Same Thing Twice Is Up To Something."]

4. The Apostle's Creed. Apparently, even the US Catholic Bishops don't like "he descended into Hell" which has become "he descended to the dead." [Even the Reformed are generally comfortable with it, though we don't mean what we say when we say it.]

3. "Hail Mary, full of grace." Aside from this first line, everything else is objectively true and right from Scripture, mostly the words of Elizabeth, the mother of John the Baptist. (Naturally, one first must be comfortable talking with Mary and the other saints.) [Snark Alert: Has anyone ever pictured John as a Southern, American, suit-wearing, non-drinking, non-dancing Baptist while reading the Gospels? Or is that just me?]

2. The virtues allgedly cultivated by each of the Mysteries. How do we know this? Have all of the faithful practioners reported the same thing? What if I don't? Worse still, what if nothing at all happens?

1. The "Hail, Holy Queen." My Protestant brethren, if you think the Hail Mary is bad, this one takes the cake. I thought this was hyper-dulia, (veneration, respect) not latria, (worship, reserved for God alone) but I must confess, the distinction is hard to see practically. Catholics say that latria more specifically denotes sacrifice, which they do not offer to Mary or the other saints. I'll let you know if or when I am persuaded by this argument. [Underlying dogmatic problem: The notion that Mary was not a sinner. If you get square with that, it would seem, her co-redemptive place is assured.]

Bonus Note: If I do make all or part of the Rosary part of my devotional life, the Gloria Patri (The "Glory Be") will have to be sung. Thanks, Christ Our King Pres. It's just natural, and altogether right.


Jamie Stober said...

3. It's actually the first part that I can affirm and would even say should be used in Protestant Christmas liturgies. It's the petition at the end that bothers me: "Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death."
1. You say: "Underlying dogmatic problem: The notion that Mary was not a sinner. If you get square with that, it would seem, her co-redemptive place is assured." I'm not sure it would be. Mary's role is indispensable in redemption history, but I really have trouble with the idea that Mary participates in redemption in as direct a sense as Rome teaches she does. I have to affirm the Protestant assertion that Christ's merits and actions alone have directly achieved our redemption. Of course, though, all of us participate in this redemption in an indirect sense.

Jason said...


What bothers you in this bothers me very little, if at all. Because if these saints who have died are alive and with God, seeing Him in glory right now, I most certainly appreciate any assistance they can offer, and this includes Mary. Though it seems irrational to believe that she never sinned at the moment, surely we can take comfort in this plain fact: Mary is not a sinner NOW (nor are the others).