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First you have to quote people correctly, the quote you attributed to me was not mine.

Secondly, nobody who posts here claims to be writing infallibly. All of us here are fallible, and can be our own understanding. Most of us come here to learn. I learn each day.

Thirdly, we’ve gone over the fact that the Catechism is a short exlanation in the simplest of terms, a starting point in learning the truth.

The following is thanks to Dave Armstrong, and covers the Authentic Catholic teaching, not just a short statement as found in the Catechism, which you seem to have contorted to say something other than what it really says.


1. Luke 1:28 “And the angel came in unto her, and said, Hail, {thou that art} highly favoured, the Lord {is} with thee: blessed {art} thou among women.”

The Gk. word rendered “highly favoured” here (KJV) and in many translations, is “kecharitomene.” Catholic Bibles usually translate it “full of grace,” which is permissible, and not merely a biased position. E.g., the Protestant Amplified Bible mentions in a note that “endued with grace” is the “literal translation.” W.E. Vine’s Expository Dictionary of N.T. Words, a standard Protestant reference, states that the word means “to make graceful or gracious . . . grace implies more than favour; grace is a free gift, favour may be deserved or gained.”

If this be true, the Catholic rendering makes more clear the Catholic position that Mary’s Immaculate Conception is entirely unmerited on her part, a sheer act of mercy and grace performed solely by God. “Favour” may imply otherwise. “Kecharitomene,” in any event, is derived from the root “charis,” whose literal meaning is “grace” (it is translated as “grace” 129 out of 150 times in the KJV). The angel is here, in effect, giving Mary a new name (“full of grace”), as if he were addressing Abraham as “full of faith,” or Solomon “full of wisdom” (characteristics which typified them). Throughout the Bible, names were indicative of one’s character and essence, all the more so if God renamed a person.

2. Catholicism needs only to show the harmony of a doctrine with the Bible. It is not our view that every doctrine of Christianity must appear whole, explicit, and often, in the pages of the Bible. We have also Sacred Tradition, Church Authority, and an acceptance of the development of understanding of essentially unchanging Christian truths. A belief implicitly biblical is not “anti-biblical” or “unbiblical,” as many Protestants would have us believe. In fact, many Protestant doctrines are either not found in the Bible at all (e.g., “Bible alone” and the Canon of the Bible), are based on only a very few direct passages (e.g., the Virgin Birth), or are indirectly deduced from many implicit passages (e.g., the Trinity, the two natures of Jesus Christ). Likewise with the Immaculate Conception and other Catholic Marian beliefs.

3. Luke 1:35 “And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God.”

This verse explicitly establishes a link between Mary as bearer of the New Covenant and the Ark of the Old Covenant. The Gk. word for “overshadow” (“episkiasei”) was used of the bright cloud at the Transfiguration of Jesus Christ (Mt 17:5; Lk 9:34) and is reminiscent of the Shekinah of the OT, which represented God’s Presence (Ex 24:15-16; 40:34-8; 1 Ki 8:4-11). Mary became like the Holy of Holies in the Temple, where God dwelt. God gave extremely detailed instructions on constructing the ark, since it was to contain His Law (Ex 25-30 and 35-40). Mary had to be that much more holy, since she was to carry the Word of God in the flesh (Job 14:4). Further parallelism between Mary and the Ark is indicated in comparing Lk 1:43 with 2 Sam 6:9, Lk 1:44 with 2 Sam 6:14-16, and Lk 1:39-45,56 with 2 Sam 6:10-12.

Mary had to be sinless in order to be in such close proximity to God Himself. The whole Bible teaches this (e.g., Ex 3:5; Deut 23:14). God’s Presence imparts and requires holiness (1 Cor 3:13-17; 1 Jn 3:3-9). The Jewish high priest entered the Holy of Holies (where the Ark and God’s Special Presence were) only once a year, under threat of death if God’s instructions were violated (Lev 16:2-4,13). The Ark itself was so holy that only a few were allowed to touch it (Num 4:15; 2 Sam 6:2-7). Thus, Mary, due to her ineffable physical and spiritual relationship with God the Son, the Holy Spirit (as “Spouse”), and God the Father (as “Daughter of Zion”), necessarily had to be granted the grace of sinlessness from conception, just as we all will be cleansed utterly in order to be present with God in heaven (Rev 21:27). Seen in this light, the Immaculate Conception, though still technically a deduction from the Bible, is a very biblical doctrine indeed.

4. Other biblical parallels to the Immaculate Conception exist. Jeremiah (Jer 1:5) and John the Baptist (Lk 1:15) were sanctified from the womb for the serious tasks to which God was calling them. The Apostles were endowed with many extraordinary gifts for their unique role in the history of Christianity (Acts 2; 2 Cor 3:5-6). Adam and Eve, before the Fall, were immaculate and without sin. They were brought forth from an immaculate earth, just as Jesus came forth from the immaculate Mary. Mary is the “second Eve” just as Jesus was the “second Adam” (Rom 5:14; 1 Cor 15:22,45). Mary, by her profound obedience (Lk 1:38), “undoes” Eve’s disobedience in the Garden. The angels were created sinless and have remained so (except for the rebel demons). Saints in heaven are completely holy (Rev 14:5). God saved Mary by preserving her from the “pit” of sin, while He pulls the rest of us out of it. This is why God is every bit as much her Savior as He is ours (LK 1:47).

The Immaculate Mary prefigures the perfected Church (Eph 5:25-27). Catholics venerate in Mary no more than the glory promised by God to every creature who stays the course. The doctrine of Original Sin is more difficult to believe than Mary’s Immaculate Conception. It is no difficulty to believe that God can unite a soul to flesh without sin. It is much harder to accept the notion that millions of souls are conceived with it.

5. It is abundantly strange that so many Protestants see Catholic Marian beliefs as idolatrous, when in fact, the Immaculate Conception is nothing if not a case where God saves absolutely independently of human effort or “works,” without even the possibility of them – pure grace and nothing but grace. Protestants hold that this is what saves everyone who attains salvation. So how can Catholics be chided for applying this notion of unmerited grace to Mary? The only difference is that Catholics believe that God’s applied grace obliterates sin, whereas in Protestantism, it merely “covers it up.” This notion, however, is unbiblical, and was originated, by and large, by Martin Luther.

6. He who held back the waves of that Jordan, that the ark of the Old Testament might pass untouched and honored through its bed, could hold back the wave of Adam, lest it overflow the ark of the New Testament beneath its defiling floods. For He, who could have limited Adam’s sin unto himself, can ward off that sin from Mary. And what He could, that He willed to do. For why should He not have willed it?
{Bishop William Ullathorne, The Immaculate Conception, 1855}