Thursday, January 18, 2018

Cat fight in heaven

It's common for Catholic apologists to cast Mary in the role of the Queen Mother of Heaven. The unstated inference seems to be that if Jesus is the king, and Mary is his mother, that makes her the Queen Mother of Heaven. 

Some Catholic apologists take this a step further and infer that Mary is the power behind the throne. Jesus must forever honor his mother by submitting to her whims. So Mary dictates cosmic policy. Mary wears the pants in heaven.

There are several problems with this inference:

i) Grown sons are not supposed to be subservient to their mothers.

ii) Christ's relationship to his human mother is significantly different from normal filial relationships. The Son is Mary's Creator, Redeemer, and Judge. 

iii) Catholic apologists also like to emphasize the church as the bride of Christ. But that raises interesting questions regarding the power dynamic.

A marriage in which the mother-in-law overrules the wife is a marriage on the rocks. In marriage, some mothers are valued counselors, but mothers-in-law aren't supposed to outrank wives. 

A marriage establishes a new authority structure. There was the authority structure of your parents' marriage, but when you grow up you should outgrow that. And your own marriage replaces the old authority structure with the new authority structure.

If Catholic theology is true, then heaven is an acrimonious marriage in which Jesus must duck to avoid the flying pots and pans as his mother and his bride vie for dominance. Not a happy marriage, that's for sure. Thankfully, the solid dome provides soundproofing so that we don't hear all the yelling upstairs. 

1 comment:

  1. It seems to me that we should focus on the misnomer "Mother of God" alongside the unbiblical and anti-biblical role "Queen Mother of Heaven" assumed for Mary. Catholic man-centered theological distinctives have resulted in Mary being seen as seated upon her throne alongside (or above?) Jesus. The Catholic parsing of "honor", "veneration", and "worship" create anarchy in practice, as each faithful Catholic employs private interpretation to determine the dividing line between veneration and worship. Regarding acrimony or competition, Catholic apologists would simply say that Jesus and Mary are hand-in-hand and in perfect harmony and agreement, and good Catholics should not be competing against their own mother, the "Mother of the Faithful."