Catholic Mariology Cult Gaining Wide Support
NEW YORK, Aug. 19 (UPI) -- Cardinal John O'Connor quietly supports a movement within the Catholic Church to elevate the status of the Virgin Mary, expanding the Holy Trinity. In the proposed ``holy quartet,'' Mary would play multiple roles -- daughter of God the father, mother of Jesus the son and spouse of the Holy Spirit. The new dogma would put Mary on an equal status with Jesus Christ. The group pushing for this theological change has collected 4.3 million signatures worldwide. The group says Mary, like Jesus, was a mediator between God and man. A spokesman for O'Connor tells the New York Daily News the cardinal has not called on the pope to issue a new papal dogma. However, he has called the ideas ``theologically sound.'' Some Catholics contend the controversial group is cultlike in its desire to deify Mary and is swept up in end-of-millenium fever. These critics also argue the change in theology will upset other Christian groups that do not worship the madonna.
The Times (London, UK) Thursday August 21 1997 page 4.
Pope is asked to name Mary as co-redeemer
By Richard Owen and Michael Hornsell
Many of the eight million Roman Catholics in Britain and Ireland are supporting a worldwide appeal to the Pope to proclaim the Virgin Mary as a co-redeemer, placing her on a par with Jesus Christ.
A petition containing more than 40,000 signatures, organised in the United States, will be delivered to John Paul II at the Vatican by the end of the week - adding to the 4,340,000 signatures he has received in the past four years from 157 countries supporting the proposed dogma.
Fears are mounting among those who believe that proclaiming Mary as co-redemptrix or mediatrix of all graces would elevate her status beyond the honour accorded to her in many denominations and create a Holy Quartet in place of the Holy Trinity. Nicholas Coote, an assistant general secretary of the Bishops Conference of England and Wales, said yesterday: This makes me feel uneasy. All one can say is that there are certain parameters beyond which you may not go.
One of these is what is taught by Vatican Council II, [comprising] all bishops under the Pope. They were very emphatic indeed, saying that the office of Mary towards human beings in no way obscures or diminishes the unique mediation of Christ. In I Timothy , it says there is one God and one mediator between God and man and that is Jesus Christ.
The Pope is a devotee of the Marian cult: he believes that she has saved his life on several occasions, most notably during the attempt on his life in St Peters Square in May 1981.
He may be tempted to have Mary elevated to co-redeemer while he can, given that he is 77 and in poor health. But while he can try to push doctrine in a particular direction, major doctrinal changes have to be made by the whole church , which in effect would mean a third Vatican Council.
The Second Vatican Council of 1962-65, although under pressure from devotees of Mary - including the current Pope, who attended in his former rank as Cardinal Wojtyla - confined itself to a restrained section on her. Paul VI who was then Pope, declared her only to be Mother of the Church.