And yet in Bible country, some of theLutheran Methods are putting up statues of Mary in their churches.
It all there in Luke 1:40ff.
----- Original Message -----
From: [log in to unmask] href="mailto:[log in to unmask]">Diana Manister
To: [log in to unmask] href="mailto:[log in to unmask]">[log in to unmask]
Sent: Tuesday, March 09, 2010 1:59 PM
Subject: Re: Christian Belief in Eliot's Pre-conversion Poetry

Dear Jerome,

There is a lot to be said for faith as it is lived that legalistic theology omits. My original point, before this turned into a Jesuitical exercise, was that Mary is a more powerful presence in the Catholic church than in Protestant religions, whether she is venerated or worshipped. Diana

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On Mar 9, 2010, at 4:02 PM, Jerome Walsh <[log in to unmask]> wrote:


It is precisely my training in theology that enables me to know that your claim is inaccurate, no matter how often it is parroted by both well-meaning "defenders of orthodoxy" and by less well-meaning detractors.  Roman Catholic dogma is MUCH more conditioned than that.  When I was studying theology, the formulation was that the Pope spoke infallibly when he taught (1) ex cathedra (2) on a matter of faith and morals (3) that was contained in revelation and (4) was to be held by all believers.  (1) A statement at a general audience is not "ex cathedra."  (2) A noun phrase like "devotione mariale" (or whatever his original text was) is not a teaching; it's a noun phrase.  (3) There's no basis in scripture (and little in tradition) that supports "worship" of Mary in the technical sense.  (4) The Pope's remarks were not presented as "teaching to be accepted by all believers."  So, in no way whatsoever does this remark qualify as "infallible."

Please give theology the respect it deserves as a careful, nuanced system of thought.  I try to do that for literary criticism and learn from those whose understanding of the subject is deeper than my own.


From: Diana Manister <[log in to unmask]>
To: [log in to unmask]
Sent: Tue, March 9, 2010 2:22:32 PM
Subject: Re: Christian Belief in Eliot's Pre-conversion Poetry

Jerome, since you profess theological expertise perhaps it is unnecessary to remind you that all Catholics are required by the catechism to accept that "the Pope cannot err in matters of faith and morals." So that when a Pope establishes Mary worship there is no arguing with it.
I don't think it's I who have missed the point. Marian WORSHIP is what Pope Paul II established, not veneration.


Really, Diana, you miss the point sometimes.  Worship of Mary is worship.  Veneration of Mary is not.

"Worship," in theology, is a technical term (just as "progressive present tense" is in grammatical discourse).  No Christian communion I am aware of (including the Catholic, in which I have some theological expertise) "worships" Mary.  Some Christian communions "venerate" (another technical term) her, as your source says.  Some individual Christians no doubt venerate her in ways that are virtually indistinguishable from their worship of God, but to attribute their idiosyncratic (and theologically untenable) practice to a Church as a whole is simply wrong.

If, on the other hand, it is not your intention to use "worship" as it is used in theology, then please define the term so that we understand what you are claiming.

Jerry Walsh

From: DIana Manister <[log in to unmask]>
To: [log in to unmask]
Sent: Tue, March 9, 2010 10:43:54 AM
Subject: Re: Christian Belief in Eliot's Pre-conversion Poetry

Really Peter you are tiresome sometimes. Worship of Mary is worship.

See below.


A mother figure is a central object of worship in several religions (for example, images of the Virgin and Child call to mind Egyptian representations of Isis nursing her son Horus). The history of the Virgin Mary, mother of Jesus Christ, depends on the texts of the Gospels. Embellishments to her legend seem to have taken form in the fifth century in Syria. The life of the mother of Christ was exceptional: she was born free of original sin (21.168), through the Immaculate Conception; she was taken to heaven after her death (17.190.132); and, just as Saint Thomas doubted Christ's Resurrection, so he doubted Mary's Assumption. Theologians established a parallel between Christ's Passion and the Virgin's compassion: while he suffered physically on the cross, she was crucified in spirit. The Council of Ephesus in 431 sanctioned the cult of the Virgin as Mother of God; the dissemination of images of the Virgin and Child, which came to embody church doctrine, soon followed.

Since the first century, devotion to the Virgin Mary has been a major element of the spiritual life of a vast number of Christians, primarily in Catholicism. From the Council of Ephesus in 431 to Vatican II and Pope John Paul II's encyclical Redemptoris Mater, the Virgin Mary has come to be seen not only as the Mother of God but also as the Mother of the Church, a Mediatrix who intercedes to Jesus Christ and even a proposed Co-Redemptrix.

The key role of the Virgin Mary in the beliefs of many Christians, her veneration, and the growth of Mariology have not only come about by the Marian writings of the saints or official statements but have often been driven from the ground up, from the masses of believers, and at times via reported Marian apparitions, miracles and healings.

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On Mar 9, 2010, at 3:53 AM, Peter Montgomery <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

The Catholic Church does not worship Mary, nor does it consider her as
having anything of a divine nature. One of the very early councils of the
Church, I think the one in Nicea, defined Jesus Christ as both God and
man in an inseparable union, and to affirm that, indicated that Mary gave
birth to the entire person of Jesus, both divine and human, so the calling
of her to be the Mopther of God is a singular assertion of Christ's nature.
Mary is honoured or venerated in a very special way, but to say she is
worshipped would be to assert a heresy.
As I understand it, the Anglicans do subscribe to the same doctrines
of that early council.
Your highschool religious education is singularly lacking, it would seem,
----- Original Message -----
From: [log in to unmask] href="mailto:[log in to unmask]" target=_blank rel=nofollow fsmarker="37861" ymailto="mailto:[log in to unmask]">Diana Manister
To: [log in to unmask] href="mailto:[log in to unmask]" target=_blank rel=nofollow fsmarker="63627" ymailto="mailto:[log in to unmask]">[log in to unmask]
Sent: Monday, March 08, 2010 6:16 AM
Subject: Re: Christian Belief in Eliot's Pre-conversion Poetry

Dear David,

Worship of the Virgin Mary as nearly the fourth person of the Blessed Trinity is absent from Anglicanism. There are many other differences, such as confession made to a priest, but the Mother of God is a biggie. The Catholic church decided to incorporate Mary when efforts to ban Mary-worship failed.


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On Mar 8, 2010, at 2:45 AM, David Boyd <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

At risk of being pedantic, don't think TSE ever converted to 'catholicism'
He converted to the established Church of England, to the 'High Church / Anglo-Catholic' faction within it, but still to Protestant Anglicanism, as opposed to Roman Catholicism.
Theology isn't my interest, but believe there are fundamental cultural and theological differences here, not least Papal authority / infallibility.
Not to mention female priests !
In reality, it's all the spectrum of the very 'broad' Anglican Church - at one end, the Pope has sought to entice the Anglo-Catholics back to the Vatican fold, but at the other 'Low Church' end, this notion would be unthinkable.
And culturally, this does still matter a lot - just look at Northern Ireland and its troubles, for example.

On 7 March 2010 17:18, Nancy Gish <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
He grew up in a religious Christian home.  That is known.  No one has said otherwise.  That is not the issue.  It is a fact that at Harvard he attended Buddhist meetings and studied Eastern philosophy, but he did not become a Buddhist.  What is there to demonstrate about his early Christian milieu that anyone denies?

>>> Chokh Raj 03/07/10 11:32 AM >>>

Dear Listers,
In the posts that follow, I intend taking up Eliot's preoccupation with Christian thought and imagery in the poetry he chose to publish before his formal conversion to Catholicism. What fascinates is the fervence, ardor and earnestness that he brings to bear upon his treatment of them. To me it is here, more than anywhere else, that one can trace the poet's essential rootedness in Christian belief.

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