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Glossary

887

“Our Father,” which are its first

words (2759).

LOVE:

See

Charity.

-M-

MAGI:

The wise men who came

from the East to pay homage to

the newborn Savior (528).

MAGISTERIUM:

The living,

teaching office of the Church,

whose task it is to give as

authentic interpretation of the

word of God, whether in its

written form (Sacred Scripture),

or in the form of Tradition. The

Magisterium ensures the Church’s

fidelity to the teaching of the

Apostles in matters of faith and

morals (85, 890, 2033).

MARKS (NOTES) OF THE

CHURCH:

The four attributes

(marks or notes) of the Church

mentioned in the Nicene-

Constantinopolitan creed: “We

believe in one, holy, catholic, and

apostolic Church” (811).

MARRIAGE:

A covenant or

partnership of life between a man

and woman, which is ordered to

the well-being of the spouses and

to the procreation and upbringing

of children. When validly

contracted between two baptized

people, marriage is a sacrament

(Matrimony) (1601).

MARTYR:

Awitness to the

truth of the faith, in which the

martyr endures even death to

be faithful to Christ. Those who

die for the faith before having

received Baptism are said to have

received a “baptism of blood,”

by which their sins are forgiven

and they share in the death and

Resurrection of Christ (1258,

2473).

MARY:

The mother of Jesus.

Because she is the mother of

Jesus—Son of God and second

Person of the Blessed Trinity—

according to the flesh, she is

rightly called the Mother of God

(

Theotokos

) (148, 495). Mary is also

called “full of grace,” and “Mother

of the Church,” and in Christian

prayer and devotion, “Our Lady,”

the “Blessed Virgin Mary,” and

the “New Eve” (722, 726, 963).

See

Virgin Mary.

MASS:

The Eucharist or principal

sacramental celebration of the

Church, established by Jesus

at the Last Supper, in which

the mystery of our salvation

through participation in the

sacrificial death and glorious

Resurrection of Christ is renewed

and accomplished. The Mass

renews the paschal sacrifice of

Christ as the sacrifice offered by

the Church. It is called “Mass”

(from the Latin

missa

) because of

the “mission” or “sending” with

which the liturgical celebration

concludes (Latin: “

Ite, Missa

est.

”) (1332; cf. 1088, 1382, 2192).

See

Eucharist; Paschal Mystery/

Sacrifice.

MATRIMONY:

See

Marriage.

MEDIATOR/MEDIATRIX:

One

who links or reconciles separate

or opposing parties. Thus Jesus

Christ is the “one

mediator

between God and the human

race” (

1 Tm

2:5). Through his

sacrificial offering he has become

high priest and unique mediator

who has gained for us access to

God’s saving grace for humanity.

Moreover, Mary too is sometimes

called

Mediatrix

in virtue of her

cooperation in the saving mission

of Christ, who alone is the unique

mediator between God and

humanity (618, 1544; cf. 970).