DPPL 185-186: Mary And The Magisterium

STA altar at night smallThe Magisterium weighs in on Marian devotion. Pope Paul gets cited a lot in this document, including here:

185. Here, it will be useful to recall some pronouncements of the Church’s Magisterium on Marian devotions. These should always be adhered to when elaboration new pious exercises or in revising those already in use, or simply in activating them in worship (Cf. Paul VI, Marialis cultus,24). The care and attention of the Pastors of the Church for Marian devotions are due to their importance, since they are both a fruit and an expression of Marian piety among the people and the ecclesial community, and a significant means of promoting the “Marian formation” of the faithful, as well as in determining the manner in which the piety of the faithful for the Blessed Virgin Mary is molded.

The challenge here is that nearly every Catholic lay person is unaware of Marialis Cultus or other such documents. How much molding takes place after development occur? On the other hand, how much Marian devotion is really beyond Christian worship? That seems to be the main question:

186. The fundamental principle of the Magisterium with regard to such pious exercises is that they should be derivative from the “one worship which is rightly called Christian, because it efficaciously originates in Christ, finds full expression in Christ, and through Him, in the Holy Spirit leads to the Father” (Cf. Paul VI, Marialis cultus, introduction). Hence, Marian devotions, in varying degrees and modes, should:
• give expression to the Trinitarian note which characterises worship of the God revealed in the New Testament, the Father, Son and Holy Spirit; the pneumatological aspect, since every true form of piety comes from the Spirit and is exercised in the Spirit; the ecclesial character, in virtue of which the faithful are constituted as the holy people of God, gathered in prayer in the Lord’s name (cf. Mt 18, 20) in the vital Communion of Saints (Cf. Paul VI, Marialis cultus 25-39; CDWDS, Circular letter Guidelines and proposals for the celebration of the Marian Year, 8);
• have constant recourse to Sacred Scripture, as understood in Sacred Tradition; not overlook the demands of the ecumenical movement in the Church’s profession of faith; consider the anthropological aspects of cultic expressions so as to reflect a true concept of (humankind) and a valid response to (our) needs; highlight the eschatological tension which is essential to the Gospel message; make clear missionary responsibility and the duty of bearing witness, which are incumbent on the Lord’s disciples (Cf. CDWDS, Circular letter Guidelines and proposals for the celebration of the Marian Year, 8).

So the basic concerns are two: does Marian devotion place God–the Trinity, not just Jesus–at the center, and is based on Scripture and Tradition. I note that the DPPL mentions the importance of mission, witnessing to Christ, and discipleship. Timely for today.

The Directory on Popular Piety and the Liturgy is online at the Vatican site.

About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in Minnesota, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
This entry was posted in Directory on Popular Piety and the Liturgy, post-conciliar liturgy documents. Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to DPPL 185-186: Mary And The Magisterium

  1. Jim McCrea says:

    The Catholicism I was raised with was virtually non-stop “Marialis Cultus.”

    Enough, already.

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