Saturday, February 16, 2008

Why Pray To Mary and the Saints?

There has been a recent discussion about Mary on The Path blog. I really enjoy his honest inquiry. This discussion about Mary generated quite a few responses, two of which were from me because, like many former Protestants, this whole idea of Mary and the Saints is a huge deal. From the outset of my journey, it was one of the most distasteful things for me. I thought, "Why can't they just leave that part out - it is just so unbiblical!"

It wasn't until I read a response from Perry Robinson that it hit me. Here is a snippet of Perry Robinson's comment followed by what I posted:

"The saints are deified and enjoy participation in the divine life to a fuller measure. Consequently they not only enjoy holiness and immortality but other divine powers also." Of course, this is exactly it! If they were great prayer warriors here, how much more so there? If they were great miracle workers here, how much more so there? And if Mary was the God-bearing, God-honoring, God-fulfilling worker of His divine will here, how much more so there? I can picture it. We don't become less and dissipate into the fog when our life ends here, we become greater; we see Him face-to-face and become just like Him, for we see Him as He is: An interceding high priest before our Father in heaven, working miracles for the glory of His Name.
I then remembered Jesus stating that wherever He is, His servant is there also - how much more so in the heavenly realm! As Christians, it only gets better for us. Knowing concretely we have this great cloud of witnesses, of intercessors, of miracle workers and protectors, how much more dynamic and rich does that make our walk with God? This is a great relief for me. This is the kind of answer I was hoping for, one that would make me say, "Aha!" I thank God now more than ever for bringing me into Orthodoxy. This is such a milestone moment for me in my journey. I no longer have to internally wince when I hear a saint answered a prayer or Mary performed a miracle - they are His Body, His city and His heritage, living stones in His spiritual household and pillars in the temple of God unto the ages of ages, Amen.

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