The Church Fathers and Devotion to and Intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary by Joe Gallegos
"For as Eve was seduced by the word of an angel to flee from God, having rebelled against His Word, so Mary by the word of an angel received the glad tidings that she would bear God by obeying his Word. The former was seduced to disobey God, but the latter was persuaded to obey God, so that the Virgin Mary might become the advocate of the virgin Eve. As the human race was subjected to death through [the act of] a virgin, so it was saved by a virgin."
Irenaeus, Against Heresies, V:19,1(A.D. 180),in ANF,I:547
"Under your mercy we take refuge, O Mother of God. Do not reject our supplications in necessity, but deliver us from danger,[O you] alone pure and alone blessed."
Sub Tuum Praesidium, Egypt 3rd Century, From Rylands Papyrus,in MCF,79
"O noble Virgin, truly you are greater than any other greatness. For who is your equal in greatness, O dwelling place of God the Word? To whom among all creatures shall I compare you, O Virgin? You are greater than them all O Covenant, clothed with purity instead of gold! You are the Ark in which is found the golden vessel containing the true manna, that is, the flesh in which divinity resides."
Athanasius, Homily of the Papyrus of Turin,71:216(ante AD 373),in MCF,106
"Recalling these and other circumstances and imploring the Virgin Mary to bring assistance, since she, too, was a virgin and had been in danger, she entrusted herself to the remedy of fasting and sleeping on the ground."
Gregory of Nazianzen, Oration 24:11(A.D. 379),in MCF,167
"Let, then, the life of Mary be as it were virginity itself, set forth in a likeness, from which, as from a mirror, the appearance of chastity and the form of virtue is reflected.... Nor would I hesitate to admit you to the altars of God, whose souls I would without hesitation call altars, on which Christ is daily offered for the redemption of the body. For if the virgin's body be a temple of God, what is her soul, which, the ashes, as it were, of the body being shaken off, once more uncovered by the hand of the Eternal Priest, exhales the vapour of the divine fire. Blessed virgins, who emit a fragrance through divine grace as gardens do through flowers, temples through religion, altars through the priest."
Ambrose, On Virginity II:6,18(AD 378),in NPNF2,X:374,376
"For it is said that he[Gregory the Wonderworker] heard the one who had appeared in womanly form exhorting John the Evangelist to explain to the young man the mystery of the true faith. John, in his turn, declared that he was completely willing to please the Mother of the Lord even in this matter and this was the one thing closest to his heart. And so the discussion coming to a close, and after they had made it quite clear and precise for him, the two disappeared from his sight."
Gregory of Nyssa,On Gregory the WonderWorker(AD 380),PG 46:912,in MCF,94
"Mary, the holy Virgin, is truly great before God and men. For how shall we not proclaim her great, who held within her the uncontainable One, whom neither heaven nor earth can contain?"
Epiphanius, Panarion, 30:31(ante AD 403),in MCF,127
In light of the Marian heresy of adoration(Collyridians): "Let Mary be held in honour. Let the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost be adored, but let no one adore Mary"
Epiphanius,ten Marian medeis prosknueito(ante AD 403),in CE
"Give milk, Mother to him who is our food, give milk to the bread coming down from heaven ... give milk to him who made you such that he could be made fruitfulness in conception and in birth, did not take from you the ornament of virginity."
Augustine,Sermon 369:1(AD 430),in THEO,187
"Hail to thee Mary, Mother of God, to whom in towns and villages and in island were founded churches of true believers"
Cyril of Alexandria, Homily 11(ante AD 444),in CE
"Hail, our desirable gladness; Hail, O rejoicing of the Churches; Hail, O name that breathes out sweetness; Hail, face that radiates divinity and grace; Hail, most venerable memory;"
Theodotus of Ancrya, Homily 4:3(ante AD 446),in MCF,267
"The Virgin's festival (parthenike panegyris) incites our tongue today to herald her praise ... handmaid and Mother, Virgin and heaven, the only bridge of God to men, the awful loom of the Incarnation, in which by some unspeakable way the garment of that union was woven, whereof the weaver is the Holy Ghost; and the spinner the overshadowing from on high; the wool the ancient fleece of Adam; the woof the undefiled flesh from the virgin, the weaver's shuttle the immense grace of Him who brought it about; the artificer the Word gliding through the hearing"
Proclus of Constantinople, Homily 1(ante AD 446),in CE
"The Virgin received Salvation so that she may give it back to the centuries."
Peter Chrysologus, Sermon 140(ante AD 450),in MIRA,16
"O Virgin all holy, he who has said of you all that is honorable and glorious has not sinned against the truth, but remains unequal to your merit. Look down upon us from above and be propitious to us. Lead us in peace and having brought us without shame to the throne of judgment, grant us a place at the right hand of your Son, that we may borne off to heaven and sing with angels to the uncreated, consubstantial Trinity"
Basil of Seleucia, PG 85:452(ante AD 459),in THEO,187
According to Romanos the Singer, the BVM replies: "Cease your laments; I will make myself your advocate in my Son's presence. Meanwhile, no more sadness, because I have brought joy to the world. For it is to destroy the kingdom of sorrow that I have come into the world: I full of grace ... Then curb your tears; accept me as your mediatrix in the presence of him who was born from me, because the author of joy is the God generated before all ages. Remain calm; be troubled no longer: I come from him, full of grace."
Romanos the Singer,On Christmas 2,10-11(ante AD 560),in MCF,327
"Raised to heaven, she remains for the human race an unconquerable rampart, interceding for us before her Son and God."
Theoteknos of Livias, Assumption 291(ante AD 560),in THEO,187
"Hail Mary full of grace, the Lord is with thee; blessed art thou amongst women and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, because thou didst conceive Christ, the Son of God, the Redeemer of our souls"
Coptic Ostraca (AD 600),in CE
"Mary the Ever-Virgin -- radiant with divine light and full of grace, mediatrix first through her supernatural birth and now because of the intercession of her maternal assistance -- be crowned with neverending blessings ... seeking balance and fittingness in all things, we should make our way honestly, as sons of light."
Germanus of Constantinople, Homily on the Liberation of Constantinople, 23(ante AD 733),in MCF,387
"O, how marvelous it is! She acts as a mediatrix between the loftiness of God and the lowliness of the flesh, and becomes Mother of the Creator."
Andrew of Crete, Homily 1 on Mary's Nativity(ante AD 740),in MCF,398
"She is all beautiful, all near to God. For she, surpassing the cherubim. Exalted beyond the seraphim, is placed near to God."
John of Damascene, Homily on the Nativity,9(ante AD 749),in MCF,403
"We today also remain near you, O Lady. Yes, I repeat, O Lady, Mother of God and Virgin. We bind our souls to your hope, as to a most firm and totally unbreakable anchor, consecrating to you mind, soul, body, and all our being and honoring you, as much as we can, with psalms, hymns, and spiritual canticles."
John of Damascene, Homily 1 on the Dormition,14(ante AD 749),in MCF,408
"Let us entrust ourselves with all our soul's affection to the intercession of the Blessed Virgin: let us all, with all our strength, beg her patronage, that, at the moment when on earth we surround her with our suppliant homage, she herself may deign in heaven to commend us with fervent prayer. For without any doubt she who merited to bring ransom for those who needed deliverance, can more than all the saints benefit by her favor those who have received deliverance"
Ambrose Autpert, Assumption of the Virgin, (ante AD 778)PL 39:2134,in THEO,188
"Let us approach with confident spirit the throne of the high Priest, where he is our victim, priest, advocate and judge."
Radbert Paschasius, On the Assumption(ante AD 786), PL 96:249B,in THEO,188
"For she who brought forth the source of mercy, Jesus Christ, our God and Lord, receiving from him all things, will and through him, grant the wishes of all"
Paul the Deacon, (ante AD 799),PL 95,1574,in THEO,188
"You scatter your favors with still greater abundance since you possess more fully him who is their source and who is entirely willing to give them to us, rather you possess almost everything by yourself and you show largesse to whom you will and to him who begs it of you."
John the Geometer, Life of Mary(AD 989),in THEO,187
"May we deserve to have the help of your intercession in heaven, because as the Son of God has deigned to descend to us through you, so we also must come to him with you"
Peter Damian,(ante AD 1072),PL 144:761B,in THEO,188
"The Mother of God is our mother. May the good mother ask and beg for us, may she request and obtain what is good for us."
Anselm, Oration 7(ante AD 1109),in THEO,188
"O whoever you may be who feel yourself on the tide of this world drifting in storms and tempests rather than treading firm ground, turn not your eyes from the effulgence of this star, unless you wish to be submerged ... if she holds you, you do not fall, if she protects you, you have no fear; with her to lead you, you tire not; with her favour, you will reach your goal, conscious thus within yourself how rightly the word was spoken: 'And the Virgin's name was Mary' "
Bernard, Homily 2:17,Respice stellam(ante AD 1153),in THEO,76
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