instruere...inlustrare...delectare Disputations

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Ave, Regina caelorum

On the Octave of the Assumption, the Church celebrates the Queenship of Mary.

As Queen of Heaven, Mary is Queen of the Nephos Marturon, the Great Cloud of Witnesses, which as you know includes both the Christian saints and their forebears in faith.

But Mary is no foreign queen imposed by force. She is, of course, the Mother of Christians; Catholics are used to that idea.

But she is also "the glory of Jerusalem, the joy of Israel... the fairest honor" of Abraham's race, to quote an antiphon of the Common of the Blessed Virgin Mary. She is Mother of the Church and Daughter of Zion, the bridge that links the Old Covenant and the New, the one through whom the unity of the People of God is guaranteed.

Once God put His Plan B into motion, starting with those leather garments He made for Adam and Eve, He needed no new plans. Abraham, Moses, David, the calling of a people holy to the LORD: this was not for practice, the Angel Gabriel did not announce a divine mulligan to Mary at Nazareth. The coming of the Messiah was for the fulfillment and perfection of God's holy people, not for its abandonment or replacement. We're still on Plan B, not Plan C or even Plan B.1.

The patriarchs and the prophets of old are as much a part of our lineage, as much a part of the People of God, as are the Christian martyrs and Fathers. And Mary is the key -- or, if you prefer, the place where the two meet. Daughter of one, mother of another, in her queenship she makes both one. Through her, the faithful of the Old Covenant are able to have their faith made perfect, and we today are able to be joined by faith to the New Covenant.