“Tradition means giving a vote to most obscure of all classes, our ancestors. It is the democracy of the dead. Tradition refuses to submit to the small and arrogant oligarchy of those who merely happen to be walking about. All democrats object to men being disqualified by the accident of birth; tradition objects to their being disqualified by the accident of death. Democracy tells us not to neglect a good man’s opinion, even if he is our groom; tradition asks us not to neglect a good man’s opinion, even if he is our father.” ~G.K. Chesterton
I have noticed the above picture of the Italian street-portrait of the Blessed Virgin Mary on the website Pixabay for some time, and I like it very much. It says to me that, at some point in time, one of our Catholic ancestors saw fit to place such a piece of art on the outside of their home/property, blatantly displaying their Catholic Faith, and their love for the Blessed Virgin Mary. I wonder: was it an older person? A man or a woman? What year was this devotional image placed in its current location?
Which leads into the Chesterton quote (above) regarding Tradition. Tradition does matter, especially the religious traditions of the Roman Catholic Church; including those which revolve around honoring and loving the Blessed Virgin Mary.
Catholics love the Blessed Virgin Mary.
I have posted many articles which delve into the reasons why we love Our Lady which have been sourced from saints, Doctors of the Church, priests, Scripture, lay writers and papal documents. There is a lot of reading to be done on the topic of the Blessed Virgin Mary, the Immaculate Conception; so much so that I could never post it all on one blog, post by post, unless I lived a very long time; indeed, one would have to live many lifetimes to cover it all. However, if I were to, so to say, cut to the chase, and question a Rosary praying grandmother in the back of a Catholic Church, anywhere in the world, on why she loved Our Lady, she might simply answer: because she is my mother.
Because she is my mother.
I can picture this said with certainty from this grandmother.
And, where does this (prototype of a) Catholic grandmother get this certainty that Mary is her mother?
This Catholic matron most likely learned it either from her family, from her Catholic grade school or homeschool education, from homilies and seasonal Church celebrations and processions, and/or in her Baltimore Catechism (or the St. Pius X Catechism for Children, if you need to go back to basics, order one of these). And, she most likely learned it as she prayed the Rosary, for in this prayer she has walked (sometimes without realizing it, actually, most of the time) in the school of Mary. In this school, she has spent time with the Blessed Virgin pondering over the life and death of Jesus Christ; and when such pondering is done, a person inevitably ends up not only loving Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, but loving the Blessed Virgin Mary, as well.
So, this is a Catholic religious tradition: Catholics love Mary.
It is, as G.K. Chesterton said, in the last century, on this topic:
“I do not want the crucifix to be a compromise, or a concession to the weaker brethren, or a makeweight or a by-product. I want it to be a blazon and a boast. I want there to be no more doubt about our all glorying in it than there would have been in any body of old Crusaders pitting the Cross against the Crescent. And if anyone wants to know my feelings about a point on which I touch rarely and with reluctance: the relation of the Church I left to the Church I joined, there is the answer as compact and concrete as a stone image. I do not want to be in a religion in which I am allowed to have a crucifix. I feel the same about the much more controversial question of the honour paid to the Blessed Virgin. If people do not like that cult, they are quite right not to be Catholics. But in people who are Catholics, or call themselves Catholics, I want the idea not only liked but loved and loved ardently, and above all proudly proclaimed. I want it to be what the Protestants are perfectly right in calling it; the badge and sign of a Papist. I want to be allowed to be enthusiastic about the existence of the enthusiasm; not to have my chief enthusiasm coldly tolerated as an eccentricity of myself.” (emphasis added by SF)
Let us keep our Catholic traditions.
Let us honor Our Mother who is the beautiful Lady in the portrait in the street in Italy, now and always.
Ave Maria, our Mother, the Immaculate Conception!
May you have a good day.
~Pope Leo XIII: “The recourse we have to Mary in prayer follows upon the office she continuously fills by the side of the throne of God as Mediatrix of Divine grace; being by worthiness and by merit most acceptable to Him, and, therefore, surpassing in power all the angels and saints in Heaven. Now, this merciful office of hers, perhaps, appears in no other form of prayer so manifestly as it does in the Rosary.” – Lucunda Sember Expectatione, 2.
~Rosary, promises and quotes, here.
~A how-to on praying the Rosary, here.