An understanding of Mary, Mariology and Marian dogmas is essential in fully appreciating Mary as a role model for us all, and in particular, for us Traditional Catholic women.
There is no Traditional Catholic Femininity without Mary because she is not only our role model, but also a template for us to model ourselves, our vocations and our lives on.
Now, we would never be as 100% perfect as Mary is, because she was born without original sin, but we sure can strive to a good 90%.
A lot of liberal Catholics and so-called Traditional Catholics have a pick-and-mix attitude to Biblical teaching and traditional Church doctrine.
They pattern themselves on the saints, who as wonderful and great as they were, they are not our ultimate role models for Biblical femininity and tradition – Our Lady is.
Below is a timeline and brief summaries of the Marian dogmas of the Catholic Church.
HER PERPETUAL VIRGINITY
WHEN: This dogma was upheld by the early Church Fathers, during the times of the Early Church.
This is the dogma that states her virginity was in no way altered, tampered with or spoiled by the Incarnation of Jesus. She remained a virgin for life because her virginity was preserved by God before (ante partum), during (in partum) and after (post partum) the birth of our Lord, Jesus Christ.
HER DIVINE MOTHERHOOD
WHEN: Started by the Early Church and upheld by the Council of Ephesus in 431 A.D.
As Jesus Christ, her Son is both true Man and true God, Mary is rightly referred to as the Mother of God, the Theotokos, aka the God-bearer by virtue of her bearing in her womb our Lord.
HER IMMACULATE CONCEPTION
WHEN: Began in the Early Church and was formally defined by Pope Pius IX in 1854.
According to this dogma, God prepared Mary for the Incarnation of Jesus, from the moment she was conceived in the womb of her mother, St. Anne.
We are all born with the stain of original sin. Mary, however, was preserved from this stain from conception by God because she was to bear Jesus Christ, God Himself made flesh.
THE ASSUMPTION OF HER BODY AND SOUL
WHEN: Began in the Early Church and was formally defined by Pope Pius XII in 1950
Being the immaculately conceived, ever-virgin, mother of God, Mary was taken up to Heaven, body and soul, at the end of her earthly life.
ad Jesum per Mariam