Skip to comments.Hernándo Cortés and Our Lady
Posted on 12/02/2007 7:28:29 AM PST by auraur
Hernándo Cortés and Our Lady December 2, 2007
Hernando Cortés, Spanish conquistador, explorer and Catholic. The latter title is not one that comes readily to mind in today's politically correct atmosphere. Modern historians often portray him as a ruthless brute, annihilating the native people and plundering their treasures.
In reality, Cortés was a great soldier of the Church with a deep devotion to Mary. He landed on the shores of Mexico on Good Friday, April 22, 1519. Many schoolbook historians broad brush the past and attribute Cortés and his men with motives of greed for gold and glory. However, that view fails to reveal what this deeply religious soldier and leader viewed as his true mission upon landing on the shores of what then was truly an evil empire.
Because so much of the written history we rely on today is from an Anglo-Protestant perspective, Spain's role in bringing the Christian faith to the new world is minimized by many early historians. It is important to remember the deep essence of purpose Cortés and many of his soldiers held. Cortés and his men never entered into a march or a major battle without having their confessions heard and Mass said. Cortés carried blessed medals of both St. James the Apostle and Mary close to his heart. Many of the men also carried rosary beads with them. Little did Cortés or his men realize, when they landed in 1519, what large a role Mary would play in birthing a New Spain.
When Cortés and his soldiers first encountered the indigenous people of Mexico, some of the first Aztecs thought Cortés was the god, Quetzalcoatl. In ancient Mayan-Aztec mythology, Quetzalcoatl, ironically, was light-skinned with light-hair. Legend held that he had left their lands centuries before to the east but promised to return one day to reclaim his throne and bring back the knowledge of the "one true God" to his people. Cortés never claimed to be Quetzalcoatl but this legend held back the Aztec Emperor Montezuma II from sending warriors and immediately wiping out Cortés and his soldiers when they landed in 1519.
Upon landing, Cortés planted a cross on the eastern shores of what is now Vera Cruz (English translation: True Cross), Mexico. He had Father Olmedo say Mass for his men on the sandy shores. Then a delegation from Montezuma (who was deeply troubled that Cortés/Quetzalcoatl had come on ships described by his spies as "floating islands") welcomed him, gave him presents of silver and gold and promptly asked him to leave immediately. In the banquet prepared for Cortés and the soldiers on board his "floating islands", the Aztecs sprinkled dried human blood on the food, as a test for Cortés. For if he were indeed Quetzalcoatl, perhaps he would be pleased to taste human blood again. Cortés and his men reacted with utter disgust, spit the food from their mouths and ordered Montezuma's envoys off their ships.
The sprinkling of dried human blood was nothing compared to the horrors of what lie ahead over the next two years. The Aztecs practiced human sacrifice on a scale unimaginable to the Spanish. No one will ever know exactly how many men, women and even children were sacrificed across the lands ruled by the Aztecs and the other Mayan-tribes for centuries before that. The law of the Aztecs required a thousand to their god Huitzilopochtli, the god of death, sun and war, in every temple every year. Historians tell us there were 371 temples when Cortés arrived. There were other ritual sacrifices as well to other gods. One Mexican historian estimated that one out of five children were sacrificed. Sometimes entire tribes were exterminated by sacrifice.
Month after month, year after year, in temple after temple, sacrificial victims came down the long roads leading to the pyramids, climbed the steep steps to the top of the platforms, and were bent backwards over convex slabs of stones. An immense knife with a blade of midnight black volcanic glass rose and fell, gutting the victim open. His or her heart was torn out while still beating and held up for all to see, while the ravaged body was kicked over the edge of the temple where it bounced down the steps a hundred feet below. The Aztecs priests who performed these sacrifices then consumed the blood that was collected, especially enjoying the consumption of the victim's heart. Other body parts were saved for other rituals, the dried blood saved to garnish at special ceremonial meal times. It was a culture of blood, death and gore on a scale that was unimaginable to the Spaniards.
Cortés and his men quickly realized the extent of the Satanic society they were up against. They knew their primary mission was to stop the evil practice of human sacrifice and bring souls into the Church. The gold and riches for the Spanish crown was secondary. Some of the soldiers were there for treasure to be sure. But throughout the next two years, it would not be gold or silver that would win the battles against the 25 million indigenous people that Montezuma ruled over. These Spanish soldiers knew that the true treasure to help them survive the battles to come would be the treasures of the Church: Jesus, Mary and the sacraments. Gold and silver was of little value in battle. When fighting for one's life, prayer was key.
Friar Diego de Landa writes in his book Yucatan, Before and After the Conquest in 1566, translated by William Gates: "(Cortés) preached to them the vanity of idols, and persuaded them to adore the cross; this he placed in their temples with an image of Our Lady..."
In fact when Cortés finally did reach Montezuma's capitol city of Tenochtitlan (today Mexico City), he boldly ordered that the top of one of the main human sacrificial pyramids be stripped of its evil idols, the human-blood stained walls be cleansed and that an image of Virgin Mary and a cross be erected in its place. Everywhere Cortés went, Mary and the cross were their companions. The soldiers wore the emblem of the cross on their steel helmets, on their breastplates and carried it on their banners. Mary was carried close to their hearts in medallions and by the recitations of rosaries. And when the Aztecs did capture Spanish soldiers throughout the campaign and drag them away, Cortés and his men knew they might become victims of the very practice they were determined to stop.
As the (Protestant) American historian William writes in his book, History of the Conquest of Mexico, originally published in 1843:
As the long file of (Aztec) priests reached the flat summit of the pyramid, the Spaniards saw the figures of several men stripped to their waists, some of whom, by the whiteness of their skin they recognized their own countrymen. They were going to be victims of sacrifice...what sensations the stupefied Spaniard must have gazing on this horrid spectacle, so near they could almost recognize the persons of their unfortunate friends, see the struggles and writhing of their bodies, their screams of agony.
Human sacrifice as practiced by the Aztecs when Cortés landed, was on a scale we cannot imagine. Or can we? In Aztec society, in Mayan society before that and other American-indigenous societies some of the brightest, most educated, well-trained and respected leaders were standing atop those pyramids in Aztec-Mayan society carrying out the bloody deed of human sacrifice to satisfy the hunger of their evil gods. Today some of our brightest, best educated and well-trained and respected leaders have convinced people in our society that it is a basic human right to sacrifice an innocent child in a Mother's womb. And instead of throwing that baby down the steps of a pyramid for everyone to see, it is quietly taken out with the trash. Satan still desires death. Our society today has passed laws to give him want he wants; convincing many that slaughtering their most innocent citizens in their mother's wombs is a basic human right.
Cortés conquered Aztec society in a bloody conflict. He immediately sought peace afterwards, opening the doors for his Spanish missionaries to convert the millions to the Catholic faith. Language and cultural barriers threatened the peace almost immediately after the battles ended. It took Mary's sudden appearance to St. Juan Diego and her self-portrait left on Diego's tilma (cloak) to convert people en-masse to the Church. Nine million Aztecs asked to be baptized by 1540 and tens of millions more were added within twenty years.
An incredible list of miracles, cures and interventions are attributed to Mary because of this image. Yearly, an estimated 20 million visit her Basilica, making her Mexico City home the most popular Marian shrine in the world, and the most visited Catholic Church in the world next to the Vatican. In all, twenty-five popes have officially honored Our Lady of Guadalupe. His Holiness, the late John Paul II, visited her sanctuary four times: on his first apostolic trip outside Rome as pope in 1979, and again in 1990, 1999 and 2002.
If we want the evil of abortion to end, let us be reminded of how a great devotion to our Blessed Mother has brought down evil societies, transformed peoples' hearts and led nations back to the Church. We always find in Mary the perfect mediator between mankind and God. Nearly 500 years ago, she was there for Hernando Cortés, his soldiers and St. Juan Diego and his people. Surely Our Blessed Mother will help us again if we call upon her intercession.
Cortés died in Spain, 460 years ago on December 2, 1547 at the age of 62 on his way back to Mexico. The historian Bernal Diaz tells us he was still wearing medallions of St. James the Apostle and the Blessed Mother when he passed onto eternity.
Mark Armstrong is the co-author of Amazing Grace for Fathers along with his wife, Patti Armstrong, Jeff Cavins and Matt Pinto. The couple's website is at www.raisingcatholickids.com. » login or register to post comments | email this page
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Worship, revere, or esteem Mary?
In citing Luke 8:21, My mother and my brethren are these which hear the word of God and do it, Iscool (and others) is supporting his position that family ties are less important in the eyes of Jesus than those of obedience to the will of God. If Im reading him right, Iscool is saying that Catholics wrongly put Mary in a position she does not deserve or claim, based upon her position as the biological mother of Jesus. I agree, as does the commentator in my Catholic Bible, that this passage is expressing the importance of seeking Gods will and of obedience to it over those of familial relationships.
Where our views differ is that Catholics hold Mary in high esteem because of her obedience, service to God, and the fact that God CHOSE HER to be His earthly mother. It seems to me that Jesus is not excluding Mary from his family or diminishing her importance in Luke 8:21. Consider that when the angel Gabriel appeared to Mary as described in Luke 1:26-38, the angel announced that she is to be the mother of Jesus, even though she is yet a virgin. Confused, but humble and trusting in the Lord, she assents, saying May it be done to me according to your word.
The same holds for my understanding of Iscools other citations from John: Yea rather, blessed are they that hear the word of God, and keep it (Luke 11:28). Mary is the perfect example of someone who heard the word of God and kept it. Mary proclaims, in Luke 1:46-49, My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord; my spirit rejoices in God my savior. For he has looked upon his handmaids lowliness; behold, from now on will all ages call me blessed. The Mighty one has done great things for me, and holy is his name.” Mary does not promote herself. Instead, she humbly praises God for His goodness to her and for the opportunity to serve Him. Imagine if God asked you to become the mother of a child, even though you were not married, in a culture that could stone you for such a sin. Most of us would plead to God to be spared the difficulty of facing ridicule, raising a child that was not our own, etc. This was not easy. But Marys response was a resounding yes to God, even though what He asked of her was difficult.
Ill try to summarize all that. Catholics foster devotion to Mary because:
She was chosen by God for the task of being His earthly mother.
She trusted God completely and said yes to His will, even when it was difficult.
She is an EXAMPLE of holiness, but (and I repeat) NOT the object of worship.
We love Mary because shes the greatest saint.
Mary, a mediator between God and Man?
In asserting that Christ is the only mediator between God and man, Protestants often will quote I Timothy 2:5, For there is one God. There is also one mediator between God and the human race, Christ Jesus, himself human, who gave himself as ransom for all. They also see problems with the second half of the Hail Mary prayer in which we ask Mary to pray for us sinners. The theological understanding is that Christ is the only bridge between God and humanity because only He was both fully God and fully man. It is only by His incarnation that we are redeemed and saved. I think we agree on that.
Having said that, I point out the verses immediately preceding the quote that they used from I Timothy: First of all, then, I ask that supplications, prayers, petitions, and thanksgivings be offered for everyone, for kings and for all in authority, that we may lead a quiet and tranquil life in all devotion and dignity. This is good and pleasing to God our savior, who wills everyone to be saved and to come to knowledge of the truth. (I Timothy 2:1-4) Verses 1 through 4 point out that prayer for others has value in the eyes of God. If your friend is sick and he asks you to pray for him, you will do it, right? You will ask God for his quick recovery. You are interceding for your friend, by prayer, to God. In the same way, we ask Mary in Heaven for her prayers. This pleases God.
Sacraments are required?
As Protestants will point out, the sacraments of the New Covenant are necessary for salvation. (CCC 1129) I understand sacraments of the New Covenant to mean actions performed at the instruction of Christ as recorded in the Gospels. The sacraments help us to live lives in accord with the Gospel. God works through the sacraments the grace bestowed comes from Him (as if grace could come from anywhere else).
Faith Alone vs. Faith and Works
Faith and works are necessary. Read James 2:14-24, What good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can that faith save him? If a brother or sister has nothing to wear and has no food for the day, and one of you says to them, Go in peace, keep warm, and eat well, but you do not give them the necessities of the body, what good is it? So also faith of itself, if it does not have works, is dead. You believe that God is one. You do well. Even the demons believe that and tremble. Do you want proof, you ignoramus, that faith without works is useless? Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered his son Isaac upon the altar? You see that faith was active along with his works, and faith was completed by the works. See how a person is justified by works and not by faith alone. For just as a body without a spirit is dead, so also faith without works is dead.
But wait this seems to contradict other quotations in the Bible, such as “Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight...” Romans 3:20. Because we all believe the Bible cannot contradict itself, we must be misunderstanding something here.
Stolen from www.catholic.com: Paul categorically excludes works from our salvation. But what kind of works is Paul talking about? If we believe the entire Bible, we need to see how Pauls words fit together with Jamess words, because James clearly says that a man is justified by works. If Paul and James mean the same thing by works, then they contradict one another. Since you and I both believe that the Bible cannot contradict itself, we must agree that Paul and James mean two different things by the word works.
For an explanation of this seeming contradiction, I strongly encourage anyone to read the rest of the article I just quoted by visiting the URL below. It is too long to include here.
My point is that the Catholic Church has faith in a God who is active in His people today and in history. There are even a few points in more recent history when something extraordinary happened that could not be explained away and (this is important) which had powerful, positive results, like the Our Lady of Guadalupe apparition.
Faith in Apparitions
Ill end with a discussion of such apparitions. Until I heard Mark Armstrong give a presentation on Our Lady of Guadalupe, I did not understand the image. It is plastered all over the seminary. Its on the taxi cabs in Saint Louis, where I am studying. If you go to Mexico or Central America, you probably cant walk ten feet in a city without being able to see the image of Our Lady of Guadalupe. It is a powerful image for many people in the world.
Before I understood the story of the Guadalupe apparition in its historical context, I rather disliked the image myself. It seemed, as some would see it, far too important to many Catholics. And besides, it looks weird. But after hearing the story, I came to see the Our Lady of Guadalupe apparition as a powerful manifestation of Gods love for all of humanity.
Supposedly, through the power of God, Mary appeared in Mexico. She asked that a Catholic church be constructed (she sent Juan Diego to the Catholic bishop with this request) in her honor. The church was built and in that church God is worshiped, not Mary. This apparition has converted millions of people. It brought them to the Church, where they encountered Christ.
One final footnote to that remark is that belief in such apparitions is not essential to the Catholic faith. The apparitions and miracles that seem to occur are investigated thoroughly and critically by the Vatican before they are deemed acceptable for belief by Catholics. They are judged so if they do not conflict with Christian teaching. If there are no problems, miracles may be approved for belief. Very seldom does this occur.
Acceptance of the miracle by the Vatican, however, does not force anyone to believe the miracles or apparitions occurred. Miracles and apparitions are said to be for those who receive them not necessarily for everyone. I dont have to believe that Our Lady of Guadalupe is real to be a Catholic. It is secondary and truly insignificant to my faith in Christ.
I’ve got much to learn...
I’ve been researching the “faith alone” and “faith with works” debate. Reading several other postings had me a little confused and concerned. But no more. “Faith alone” didn’t make sense to me, but most were supporting it with scripture. The Bible is big and it’s tough to wrap your head around and get the right idea. Thankfully, we’re not the first ones to think about this.
My understanding is the one put forth by the Catholic Church, which has an unchanging understanding of these matters across 2000+ years of history. Both positions can be seemingly supported all day by quoting scripture, discussing the proper translation from Greek, etc, etc.
My point is that these are important issues that deserve serious consideration ... much more than we can get on this blog, unfortunately. I suggest anyone interested in understanding the debate check out these books:
Born Fundamentalist, Reborn Catholic by David B. Currie, especially chapter seven.
Catholicism and Fundamentalism by Karl Keating, especially chapter thirteen.
Rome Sweet Home by Scott Hahn
Yes, they present the Catholic view. But the arguments are powerful and much better than anything I could post here. Read them and evaluate their arguments for yourself and think critically about your religion. If reason conflicts with your faith, you’re treading on thin ice.
The Catholic understanding is solidly based on Scripture - even if I cannot articulate it myself (I’m still new at this). The authors above do excellent jobs of explaining the debate in light of scripture.
Get out there and research the issue honestly. Thanks for the catalyst of this blog. It has strengthened my understanding of these issues and excited me for courses in scripture that begin with my theology studies next year.
The village of Fatima was given the Islamic name of the well-loved Princess of the nearby Castle of Ourem. She died at an early age after marrying the Count of Ourem and converting to Catholicism.
As the Moslems swept through Spain in the 8th century, a great religious treasure was buried for safe-keeping in the earth, high in the Estremadura Mountains. It was a much venerated statue of Our Lady holding the Divine Child Jesus that was a gift of Pope Gregory the Great to Bishop Leander of Seville. After the overthrow of Moorish occupation, the image was uncovered in the year 1326, subsequent to a vision of Our Lady to a humble shepherd by the name of Gil. Our Lady's very special statue was enshrined in a nearby Franciscan Monastery next to the "Wolf River."
The Moslems, during their Spanish occupation, had actually named the river. The Islamic term for Wolf River is "Guadalupe" (Guada = River; Lupe = Wolf). Hence, the famous Catholic image in Spain has been known, since the 14th century, by the Islamic name of "Our Lady of Guadalupe."[snip]
Our Lady appeared to a humble Aztec Indian convert by the name of Juan Diego in 1531.
When asked her name by Juan Diego, at the request of the local bishop, Our Lady's response, in the Aztec language, included the words "te coatlaxopeuh" (pronounced: "te quatlasupe") and meant "one who crushes the head of the stone serpent."
To Juan Diego and his fellow Aztecs, this revelation had great meaning, coupled with the miraculous image of Our Lady standing on top of a "crescent," the symbol of this evil serpent god. [snip] To the Bishop's Spanish ears, Our Lady's Aztec name of "Te Quatlasupe" sounded just like the name of the revered Madonna from Spain with the Islamic name, "Guadalupe." Hence, the bishop named the Mexican Madonna "Our Lady of Guadalupe." It is interesting that the "crescent" is also the symbol for Islam and that America's Shrine to Our Lady has an Islamic name.[snip]
On October 7, 1571, a great victory over the mighty Turkish fleet was won by Catholic naval forces primarily from Spain, Venice, and Genoa under the command of Don Juan of Austria. It was the last battle at sea between "oared" ships, which featured the most powerful navy in the world, a Moslem force with between 12,000 to 15,000 Christian slaves as rowers. The patchwork team of Catholic ships was powered by the Holy Rosary of the Blessed Virgin Mary.[snip]
What you may not know is that one of three admirals commanding the Catholic forces at Lepanto was Andrea Doria. He carried a small copy of Mexico's Our Lady of Guadalupe into battle. This image is now enshrined in the Church of San Stefano in Aveto, Italy. Not many know that at the Monastery of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Spain, one can view a huge warship lantern that was captured from the Moslems in the Battle of Lepanto. In Rome, look up to the ceiling of S. Maria in Aracoeli and behold decorations in gold taken from the Turkish galleys. In the Doges' Palace in Venice, Italy, one can witness a giant Islamic flag that is now a trophy from a vanquished Turkish ship from the Victory.
Thanks for that link.
A background source I can recommend:
“Conquistadors” a 4-part series hosted by Michael Wood.
(I recommend it even though it is aired on PBS!)
hosted by Michael Woods
(PBS series website)
Michael Wood: Conquistadors DVD
By Michael Wood
(Now for “VOA”’s rambling commentary about “Conquistadors” the series)
The series seems to cover “The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly” of the
Spanish adventures in the Americas. It does include the tale of
one Spaniard that survived a LONG overland march back to Spanish settlement
that seemed to develop some kindness and understanding toward the
AND the final episode details the lengthy debate in Spain that a
priest won in fighting for better treatment of the American Indians.
(Not something you’ll likely hear about in today’s public school
history classes...or university classes!)
Myself, as a non-Catholic did appreciate the depth of the series and
the fairly even-hand given to a band of men that ran the spectrum of
human virtue to vice.
But what impacted me most was seeing a rebroadcast a year or so
Host Michael Wood related how Cortes and his fellow warriors were
taken to the ritual sacrifice chamber atop one of Montezuma’s pyramids.
When Montezuma gave his apologia of how wonderfully their theology worked:
we strip the beating heart out of live victims, our sun-god is pleased
and our crops keep growing...SUPER!
When Wood told of the REVULSION of Cortez and Co. at this...
all I could think is that they were feeling what I felt on 9-11 and
the days, weeks, months, years following.
Revulsion at the theology of grinning people pimping their death cult.
Great post and excellent responses. Hope you will hang around here for a while.
You must be wrong. I'm POSITIVE Al Capone was Catholic, and I'm reasonably certain that the Pope gave him the title of "Duhfenduh of da Fait', know whut I mean?" after the massacre. Valentine's, Schmalentines, as long as it's a stick we can beat Cat'licks widdit.
Can we get the rules straight? Here you are accusing us of dissembling. So is it okay to call each other liars or not?
Really, it's fine if that's what you want to do. But I just want to be clear.
When I learned Latin in my private elementary/;middle school (one of my classmates was Catholic) we learned it with the alleged "classical" pronunciation, rather than that less conjectural "Church Latin" pronunciation. In later years it became apparent to me that this was a consequence of the largely Protestant culture of the WASPish US in which I grew up.
From early studies of US history what we were taught was the the Conquistadors were about "Glory, God, and Gold," and while it was grudgingly acknowledged that they made inroads into the American South and Southwest, of course our history was focused on the Pilgrims and Jamestown -- the English and Protestant settlers. Catholic History is, Pere Marquette and Fr. Hennepin to the contrary notwithstanding, the history of Latin America and, a little, of Canada -- and those degenerates in Louisiana, of course .....
So, even if an unforeseen result of the liberal Protestantism of the late 19th and first half of the 20th centuries was that more and more believed less and less, I would still suggest that the influence not just of Protestantism but of strong anti-Catholicism still dominates much of US intellectual life. That many modern intellectuals profess no Christianity at all rather confirms than denies the contention, I think.
Duh, Capone was a pope, right? Mid-14th century, whacked a bunch of wiseguys? (Boy is my face red!)
Thanks for those words of wisdom.
No He didn't...You're reading stuff into it that's just not there...
Jesus never called his Mother, Mother, or Mom, or Mama, or Mother of God, or Queen of Heaven...He called her woman...
Luk 11:27 And it came to pass, as he spake these things, a certain woman of the company lifted up her voice, and said unto him, Blessed is the womb that bare thee, and the paps which thou hast sucked.
Luk 11:28 But he said, Yea rather, blessed are they that hear the word of God, and keep it.
Jesus went out of his way to let us know that were are not to look on Mary as someone than the average Christian...
Mary is the MOTHER of ALL CHRISTIAN BELIEVERS, be they Catholic, Orthodox, or even Protestant.
Mother in Law, maybe, if we want to get technical...
Would it suprise you that even Protestants are discovering or rediscovering Mary, thanks to the movies The Passion Of The Christ and The Nativity?
Doesn't surprise me at all...Those Protestants never wandered too far from Rome to begin with...
This is a good thing because it will with the help of the Holy Spirit bring the Christian believers into greater unity.
I'm for unity...I support unity 100%...We should all unite as long as we leave the pope, priests and Eucharist in Rome and NOT in our united church...
And she can:
Hear prayers, provide special intercession as the Mother of the Son of God, that she is the Mother of God, that she is the mother of the church, that she is the Queen of Heaven, that she was immaculately conceived, that she was ever virgin, the dispenser of all grace, that she gave birth while keeping a hymen intact, or that she is our co-redeemer, that she appears to people with messages, that she performs miracles from heaven,
Apart from the very little that the bible says about her, she is an invention. That makes "Our lady" an apt name.
And, on the other hand, they seem to fall out naturally from the little that is in Scripture. I know we'll never settle this, but if Jesus is God and she is Jesus's Mother, what are the logical conclusions? If she was given grace to offer herself in obedience to God and consequently had Love itself grow within her and brought Love Himself into the world, then, in some way, as my daughter is a gift from my wife to me, so similarly Jesus is Mary's gift to us.
I don't the the intact hymen is de fide, and I'm an agnostic on it.
And why shouldn't she appear to people with messages? And as for any miracles - is it the opinion of most protestants that there are no more miracles? If so, I'd say it's a wonderful example of faith overrcoming experience. I've seen docs and nurses with their jaws dangling around their chests when a fatal tumor disappeared - just flat disappeared. And it did so in response to prayer, or, to be all Humean and Kantian and everything, after many prayers were made.
Now to say prayers made it happen, or that the people praying made it happen is as wrong as a beggar would be if he said his pleas caused the generosity of his benefactors.
And yet while, it seems some beggars are better at begging than others are, when we say Mary "performs" miracles, it seems to me that our offishul and liturgicaal texts take pains to say that she "performs" them largely by asking for them, and so GOD actually "performs" them.
In general I would say that I could, had I a mind to (had I a mind at all, but that's another problem), characterize the opinions of neo-orthodox Calvinism in a disparaging way, and string them together in a list, and so present them as outrageous AND as flying in the face of Scripture.
But what would be the point?
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