From the early centuries of the Church, Mary is called Mother of God “Theotokos”, or “God-Bearer.”
Mary, “Mother of God,” is the first official title given to her by the Catholic Church and maybe her most essential and most powerful title, as the Catechism of the Catholic Church reminds us,
“From the most ancientCatechism of the Catholic Church #971
timesthe Blessed Virgin has been honored with the title of ‘Mother of God,’ to whose protection the faithful fly in all their dangers and needs.”
It was at the Council of Ephesus in 431 A.D., when the Church officially insisted in defining the importance of this special title, “If anyone does not confess that God is truly Emmanuel, and that on this account the holy virgin is the “Theotokos” let him be anathema.” Furthermore the Council of Ephesus stated,
“We confess the holy Virgin to be the Mother of God because God the Word took flesh and became man and from his very conception united to Himself the temple He took from her.”
The ancient Rite of Exorcism invokes the Blessed Virgin Mary, “with confidence in the intercession of the Virgin Mary, Mother of God.” In the rosary (Mary’s weapon), we invoke the title, “Mary, Mother of God” with each Hail Mary, and each year on January 1st we begin the calendar year by commemorating a special mass celebration under the title of the “Solemnity of the Blessed Virgin Mary, the Mother of God.”
There are no coincidences in our lives, but only divine providence and God’s hand. Therefore, I wish to give testimony and witness to the great power of this title of Mary, Mother of God, as Mary interceded to save my life.
My life was spared twice during my law enforcement career through divine intervention. The first here and the following is the story of the second incident, for,
“the works of God are to be declared and made known (Tobit 12:7).”
In February of 1999 I was a zealous rooky cop and very inexperienced to say the least. We were called to assist in a drug interdiction operation. I was traveling at a high rate of speed on a limestone road (cailche). When traveling on a limestone road, after you reach a certain speed, the small stones which the road is made up of (similar to a gravel road) begin to act like rollers on a skate but instead the small stones begin to act like rollers on your tires.
Traveling at high speed, I hit some pot holes with the police car back to back, and it threw the vehicle flying off the road, into the air, causing me to lose control and resulting in a roll over.
Many things come to mind when something like this happens. It is as if the mind can process many options and time slows down or so it seems. I remember thinking “I am going to die…Oh, I needed to go to confession…I am going before God.” I thought, “Cry out to Mary your mother,” so as I was rolling over, I cried out to her in desperation three times, “Mary, Mother of God, Mary, Mother of God, Mary, Mother of God,” and everything seemed to miraculously slow down and safely come to an end.
Yes, I was injured with whip lash. Yes, I went to the hospital. Yes, the million dollar drug load was caught, but most importantly, I truly believe that my life was spared to give testimony and witness about the most powerful title of Mary, Mother of God.
This year as the people of God and the Church find themselves in continued crisis let us invoke Mary’s most powerful title in time of danger and great need as the Catechism of the Church reminds us, “We believe that the Holy Mother of God, the new Eve, Mother of the Church, continues in heaven to exercise her maternal role on behalf of the members of Christ (975).”