August 16, 2017 – BVM (Shorthand for the Blessed Virgin Mary)

Nineteen of us (including one visitor) enjoyed a Feast of the Assumption follow-up discussion by Fr. Linsky of Catholic understanding and teaching about Mary, Mother of Jesus, Theotokos. It is an important issue because it is a sticking point between Catholics and Protestants and we need to be able to explain more clearly the history and basis of Church teachings about Mary and the Church’s view of her. Too many Protestants are of the opinion that we worship four-in-one instead of the Triune God, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit and that the whole idea only came up in 1950. We all need to be able not just to deny that but to explain why it is untrue.

Here are links to some interesting stuff he mentioned.

Church of Mary in Ephesus, Turkey : Below is a screen shot of the site. Interesting photos and information are included in case you want to schedule a visit. Unfortunately, the link to the author’s thesis on the history of Mary in Ephesus doesn’t work.

ephesus

Here is a map from Google Maps showing the location of Ephesus relative to other important New Testament locations Athens and Thessalonica. And Istanbul was once Constantinople.

ephesus map

If you want to really dig deep, here is information about the Council of Ephesus: http://www.papalencyclicals.net/councils/ecum03.htm

And this on the history of the Church’s belief in The Assumption of Mary, finally made official only in 1950: https://www.ewtn.com/library/answers/aofmary.htm

At the end of the discussion time, Fr. Linsky read a letter from King St. Stephen of Hungary to his son. It can be found here http://www.stjohncatholicmclean.org/home-page-articles/archive/letters-from-saints/king-saint-stephen-of-hungary-from-admonitions-to-his-son-emeric/ and is reproduced below:

letter

So, even if we don’t plan to leave a letter for our sons and daughters, it is a very good idea to write down what we want to say to them when opportunities for serious discussion arise. To quote, or at least paraphrase, Catholic writer Flannery O’Conner, “I don’t know what I think until I read what I wrote.”

 

 

 

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