Our Lady

Scripture Reading

God’s temple in heaven was opened,
and the ark of his covenant could be seen in the temple.

A great sign appeared in the sky, a woman clothed with the sun,
with the moon under her feet,
and on her head a crown of twelve stars.
She was with child and wailed aloud in pain as she labored to give birth.
Then another sign appeared in the sky;
it was a huge red dragon, with seven heads and ten horns,
and on its heads were seven diadems.
Its tail swept away a third of the stars in the sky
and hurled them down to the earth.
Then the dragon stood before the woman about to give birth,
to devour her child when she gave birth. 
She gave birth to a son, a male child,
destined to rule all the nations with an iron rod.
Her child was caught up to God and his throne.
The woman herself fled into the desert
where she had a place prepared by God.

Then I heard a loud voice in heaven say:
“Now have salvation and power come,
and the Kingdom of our God
and the authority of his Anointed.”
(Revelation 11:19; 12:1-6, 10)

Scripture Study

11:19 ark of his covenant: The throne of God in the heavenly temple. From its base issue divine judgments symbolized by violent thunderstorms and earthquakes (4:5; 16:17–18).

12:1–6 The woman of Revelation 12 is both an individual person and a collective symbol. She is Mary, the Mother of the Messiah and the spiritual mother of his disciples (Jn 19:26–27). But she also represents the faithful of Israel, crying out for the Messiah (Rev 12:2), as well as the Church, attacked by the devil for witnessing to Jesus (12:17) (CCC 501, 507, 1138). Jer 13:18) (CCC 489). The vision speaks of the Mother of our Savior, depicting her in heaven, not on earth, as pure in body and soul, as equal to an angel, as one of heaven’s citizens, as one who brought about the Incarnation of God. She has nothing in common with this world and its evils but is exalted and worthy of heaven, despite her descent from our mortal nature (Oecumenius, Commentary on the Apocalypse 6, 19).

12:10 Now the salvation: Heaven celebrates the expulsion of the devil and his angels. This is not the fall of the angels at the dawn of time (12:4), but the defeat of evil at the turning point of salvation history, when Christ mounted the Cross and cast out the ruler of this world (Jn 12:31–32; Col 2:15).[1]

Scripture Reflection

On a symbolic level, the early Church identified itself with the heavenly Queen. It also identified the mother of Jesus as the heavenly Queen. After all, Mary was the first believer in the Good News. So, she was the first member of the Church. As the proto-member, she represents all who followed her, as disciples of her Son. If the Church saw itself in the cosmic struggle with the Evil One to make the Messiah present to the world, it could also see its first member in that role. It is no wonder that, by the time Constantine freed the Church from persecution, believers pictured Mary as the Queen. What a wonderful example of discipleship we celebrate today with the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe.

May the virtues of faith, hope, and love go with you today – DV. 

 

 

[1] The Ignatius Catholic Study Bible: The New Testament (San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 2010), 506–507.