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Antonio Vieira SJ. 1608 - 1697 AD

Antonio Vieira SJ

1608 - 1697 AD

In Maria Rosa Mystica, Lisboa 1688.

Antonio Vieira SJ is considered a key person in Brasilian history because of his courageous defence of the native Indians against the Portuguese colonists. His theology covers more than 16 volumes of text.

Passages quoted in French by Réné Laurentin (in Maria, Ecclesia, Sacerdotium, Nouvelles Éditions Latines, Paris 1952, pp. 322-326) and translated into English by John Wijngaards.

Mary is Queen of the Rosary and bishop

“Before Mary was queen of the Rosary, one could not convincingly prove that Christ her Son had bestowed on her the episcopal dignity; but ever since she is Queen of the Rosary, we can. This is what you have to understand.” Sermon on the Rosary, ib. p. 71.

Mary is a bishop because she intercedes

“Three elements belong to the priesthood and episcopacy: the call, the role of intercession, and sacrifice (Hebr 5, 1) . . .
[With regard to intercession] as Son of God Christ has all power over God. Our Lady too, because she is the true Mother of God, has all power over God. And if the prayers and intercessions of Christ are heard on account of the fact that he is the Son, those of Our Lady will not be less heard, and are even heard with more surety because of the fact that she is his Mother. Therefore it is crystal clear that in Mary we find overwhelmingly the second quality required for the dignity of a bishop!” Sermon on the Rosary, ib. p. 74.

Mary is a bishop because she reconciles sinners

“The third quality required for the dignity of the episcopacy . . . . is to effect reconciliation through gifts and sacrifices . . . .Well, among sacred ministers has there ever been any person so apt, so honourable, so well prepared for this ministry of appeasing a God offended by sin as this purest creature who was exempt from all sin?” Sermon on the Rosary, ib. p. 67.

Mary sacrificed her son on Calvary

“Abraham did not see Isaac die and yet St.Peter Chrysologus says that he sacrificed himself in his son in such a manner that he was at the same time the sacrifice and the priest, the victim and the bishop. If the fact that he was Isaac’s father was sufficient for Abraham to be priest and bishop, when we think of this mother whose obedience and charity were infinitely greater than those of Abraham, and whose Son and sacrifice were infinitely greater than Isaac, who would then dare to deny or put into doubt her episcopal dignity?” Sermon on the Rosary, ib. p. 76.

Christ communicated the episcopal dignity to his Mother

In chapter 7 of Zacharius God says: “I have made three shepherds rise up in one month”.....
And although the prophet does not declare who these three shepherds were, all those who have understood this text in the most proper and literal manner say that they were Moses, Aaron and Mary the prophetess who was sister of both men.
Mary, the sister of Moses and Aron was a pre-figurement of the Virgin Mary . . .
If each of these two brothers has communicated to Mary his own dignity, namely the royal and episcopal dignity, because she was their elder sister, how would Christ not communicate these two dignities to Mary who was not the figure but the reality, since he was the Son and she his Mother.
If because Christ was a king- a title he had not received from his mother, he communicated his royal dignity to her, with how much more reason would he communicate the dignity of the episcopacy to her since he was the great Bishop a title he had received from his mother.” Sermon on the Rosary, ib. p. 78-80a.

Mary is the supreme pontiff of Christians

“You are the supreme pontiff of Christians”, said Damascenos. He calls her “pontiff” because of her episcopal dignity, and he calls her the “supreme” in the feminine gender, because of the difference of her sex. Sermon on the Rosary, ib. p. 80b.

The obstacle of the female sex has been overcome in Mary

“ Since the obstacle of her sex has thus been clearly overcome by the authority of the saints, by the example of scripture and the power of reason . . . , we may now pass from a discussion of legality to the facts: let us see in the Queen of the Rosary or in the Rosary of the Virgin, the title, power, and exercise of her episcopal dignity . . . And in order that the proof and the demonstration will be developed in all clarity, I will divide my argument in three parts. In each one we will see that the blessed Virgin, through the prerogatives of her rosary, was not only a bishop in the proper sense of the term, but specifically:
1.  A bishop through the meaning of the word.
2.  A bishop through the tokens of her dignity.
3.  A bishop through the power of the keys. Sermon on the Rosary, ib. p. 81.

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