146 • Part I. The Creed: The Faith Professed
Finally, in Mary we behold what the Church is already like during
her pilgrimage of faith—and what the Church will become at the end of
the journey. “Mary figured profoundly in the history of salvation and in
a certain way unites and mirrors within herself the central truths of the
faith” (LG, no. 65).
MARY AS MOTHER OF THE CHURCH
At the beginning of the third session of the Second Vatican Council, Pope
Paul VI announced that Mary would be honored under the title “Mother
of the Church.”
From Christ’s conception until his death, Mary was united to her
Son in his work of salvation. From the Cross, Jesus entrusted his beloved
disciple to Mary, telling him to see her as his own mother (Jn 19:27).
When the Apostles and disciples gathered to pray after the Ascension of
Jesus, Mary was with them praying for the coming of the Holy Spirit.
Mary continues to pray before God for the Church and all humanity.
Like Mary, the Church has a maternal role, giving birth to people in
Christ. The Church can never cease to look at Mary, who gave birth to
Jesus Christ. The Church contemplates Mary’s motherhood in order to
fulfill her own calling to be mother of the members of Christ’s Mystical
Body, the Church. Also like Mary, the Church is virginal. The descrip-
tion of the Church as virginal is used here in the spiritual sense of the
undivided heart and of fidelity in its most luminous form. God calls all
the members of the Church to fidelity to the union with him begun at
Baptism and continued in the other Sacraments.
MARY’S MATERNAL INTERCESSION
In our culture, there can be a discomfort with praying for Mary’s inter-
cession on our behalf. This seems to be a mediating role that crosses a
line set out in the First Letter to Timothy: “For there is one God. / There
is also one mediator between God and the human race, / Christ Jesus,
himself human / who gave himself as a ransom for all” (1 Tm 2:5). So
Jesus Christ is the one and only mediator. Jesus alone is the Savior.