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How do Lutherans view Mary?

Discussion in 'Theologia Crucis - Lutherans' started by gracefulone1980, Mar 18, 2011.

  1. gracefulone1980

    gracefulone1980 Give thanks with a grateful heart.

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    I have just finished the 4th week of classes in our Lutheran Church. We will be joining when classes end in 2 weeks. We haven't really approached the topic of Mary yet. Can someone tell me how Lutherans view Mary? (My husband and I were both raised RCC). My husband asked me if we join the Lutheran Church is he still allowed to say Hail Mary's?
     
  2. Tangible

    Tangible ن

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    Mary | The Lutheran Church - Missouri Synod

    As for Hail Mary, check this out: http://www.christianforums.com/t1147107/
     
  3. DaRev

    DaRev New Member

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    The pre-Trent 'Hail Mary' is OK, although it's rarely if ever done.
     
  4. CaliforniaJosiah

    CaliforniaJosiah I now post at CARM Supporter

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    Former Catholic here..... ;)


    Some personal thoughts:


    1. Mariology was not an issue in the Reformation. Some of the views were not dogma yet and none of this involved the issues to which the Reformation was addressed. While Mary is mentioned - altogether in passing - a couple of times in the Lutheran Confessions, it's not addressed at length or dogmatically because again it just wasn't an issue.


    2. Luther (and the Lutheran Fathers in general) held to the common Catholic views OF THE DAY. Luther rather passionately embraced the perpetual virginity of Mary and seems to embrace the Immaculate Conception and Assumption of Mary. However, it also seems that he (and Lutherans in general) did not regard these as DOGMAS. According to my Lutheran pastor (and I have no personal confirmation of this or sources to reference), there were Lutherans of the day who did NOT teach these things and they were NOT rebuked or excommunicated or defrocked (although they were often passionately disagreed with) - all suggesting that these were not regarded as dogmas but rather as "pious opinion."


    3. Lutherans embrace Mary as the Mother of God and certainly as a virgin at the birth of Our Lord. Beyond that, I do not think there is anything of a doctrinal or standard teaching.


    4. Many in my Lutheran congregation are former Catholics (about half) and a lot of us use terms like "Our Lady" or "the Blessed Virgin" and no one seems to have any "issues" with that at all.


    5. PERSONALLY (and I really mean, just personally) most of these things are just totally off my radar. I LOVE Mary - I revere and adore Her and regard Her as Chief of the Saints - but I find these RC dogmas just plain moot. Who cares how often married couples have sex - why is that so very, very, very important and critical to our salvation? I don't know how often She did (IF AT ALL) - I just don't know why THAT should be a huge, extremely important issue to me (heck, i don't even know how often my parents have sex - AND I DON'T WANT TO KNOW). Was Mary born immaculately or did She ascend into heaven upon Her death or undeath (whichever it was)? I don't know. Frankly, I just don't have a clue why it matters. ONE of my "issues" with Catholicism is how it - at times - just goes on and on and on and on with DOGMA that is baseless and moot. But, NONE OF THAT detracts from my love and admiration for Her. I can love my earthly mother without knowing all the details of her intimacies with her husband - and I can love my spiritual Mother without knowing that.


    I HOPE that helps a bit.....


    Pax


    - Josiah







    .
     
  5. gracefulone1980

    gracefulone1980 Give thanks with a grateful heart.

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    Thanks so much everyone. I spoke with our pastor and he just said that what my husband does in his private prayer time is fine. Just to know that during service we would not hear the Hail Mary. My husband is fine with that. :)
     
  6. DaRev

    DaRev New Member

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    May I ask which church body your church belongs to?
     
  7. gracefulone1980

    gracefulone1980 Give thanks with a grateful heart.

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    We have not officially joined yet, as I am still taking classes, but I *think* LCMS...if that's what you mean...
     
  8. DaRev

    DaRev New Member

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    It's disturbing that an LCMS pastor would say it's alright to pray the Hail Mary. It contradicts what we believe.
     
  9. gracefulone1980

    gracefulone1980 Give thanks with a grateful heart.

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    He did tell me that he does not know much about the prayer to give a real answer on why the prayer shouldn't be said. He is going to get back to me on this at our next class. He did say that Lutheran's would not typically say that prayer or pray to Mary, but he said he would not tell another person how they could pray in their private moments. He said that he was glad to hear that he prays and that was more than some people do.

    I suppose what my husband struggles with is that saying the Hail Mary/Rosary were a big part of what he was taught growing up (also the same for me) in a Roman Catholic Church. I still remember after confession as a 12 yr old child sitting in the pews saying my penance of X amount of Hail Mary's and The Lord's Prayer. It's quite a change for us. I am okay with this and I understand the different views on Mary and I agree. My husband on the other hand is struggling a little with all of this. He is confident that he wants to leave the RCC, but some of the differences have been hard for him because it's not what he is used to.

    The pastor did seem a little leary on saying what he said, but he said just to make sure that he (my husband) understood that Lutherans do not say those prayers. However, he didn't feel comfortable telling someone how to pray in private. I am still learning, so I am not sure if that was an acceptable answer on the matter or not.

     
  10. DaRev

    DaRev New Member

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    I am having a lot of difficulty with what your pastor is telling you. We are most certainly not to direct prayers to anyone other that God. Praying to Mary or any other "saint" is a form of idolatry, whether in public or in private. A pastor has every right to direct on'es private prayers away from things that are contrary to Scripture and the Confessions.

    If the pastor says he is glad he prays, it doesn't seem as though he cares who your husband is praying to. I'd ask if he thinks it's OK to pray to Allah, or Buddah, or St. Cecilia if your back hurts.

    I also wonder what seminary he attended, being as he doesn't know anything about the "Hail Mary" and why it shouldn't be prayed. That's basic stuff that's taught to confirmands.
     
    PreachersWife2004 likes this.
  11. seajoy

    seajoy Senior Veteran

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    Yep - all that. I won't repeat with a new post - but I was going to say everything you just said.
     
  12. gracefulone1980

    gracefulone1980 Give thanks with a grateful heart.

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    I see what you are saying. He is the younger pastor at the church. I'm going to speak with the senior pastor to see what he says. Since we are still learning and this is all still new to us, I want to make sure that we are being taught accurately. Especially, since we are taking classes to become Lutheran. I'm also going to speak with this pastor again about this matter and bring these things to his attention.

    I have a friend who is RC and she prays to a different saint for everything that goes on in her life. Can you please tell me what the explanation is why we should not pray to saints? I ask this, one, because I want to understand it better and explain it to my husband and second, I have a mother in law who is not happy about us becoming Lutheran. Her and my husband recently got into an argument about it (she is RC) and her reaction was very upsetting. She was so angry about it that she called my husband's younger brother a not so nice name for sticking up for us. Thankfully, I was not here to witness this, I was at church. Anyway, I just want to make sure that I have a good understanding of all of this. Thanks again!

     
  13. alexnbethmom

    alexnbethmom Lutheran Chick

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    the very simple answer is, we are not to pray to anyone but God, period. the saints can't intercede at all - we are only to pray to God through Jesus Christ, His Only Son.

    i know others will be able to give you a much more detailed answer, but that is the very base, simple answer.
     
  14. gracefulone1980

    gracefulone1980 Give thanks with a grateful heart.

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    I found this on wikianswers...


    No, since they believe there is one mediator between God and men, and also that neither Mary nor the Saints have any divinely sanctioned authority to help. They see them as having lived Godly lives and having done many things worthy of admiration and in some cases emulation. But they are only regarded as human, whereas Jesus is divine and sits currently at the right hand of the Father.

    This makes perfect sense to me as does to my husband. :)
     
  15. lux et lex

    lux et lex light and law

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  16. WildStrawberry

    WildStrawberry It's almost time....

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    You might suggest to your husband that he contemplate using the Jesus Prayer in place of the Marian prayer.

    "Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, Savior! Have mercy on me, a sinner. Amen.

    ETA: Also, why should we pray to formerly alive people when we have God Himself interceding and petitioning on our behalf?
     
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2011
  17. Mark_Sam

    Mark_Sam Newbie

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    Here is the Confession Augustana (THE Lutheran creed) on the subject:

    Touching the worship of saints, they teach that the memory of saints may be set before us, that we may follow their faith and good works according to our calling; as the Emperor may follow David's example in making war to drive away the Turks from his country; for either of them is a king. But the Scripture teacheth not to invocate saints, or to ask help of saints, because it propoundeth unto us one Christ the Mediator, Propitiatory, High-Priest, and Intercessor. This Christ is to be invocated, and he hath promised that he will hear our prayers, and liketh this worship especially, to wit, that he be invocated in all afflictions. 'If any man sin, we have an advocate with God, Jesus Christ the righteous' (1 John ii. 1). - Art. XXI. Of the Worship of Saints.

    According to Philipp Melanchthon, there are three ways of honouring the saints:
    1. By thanking God for examples of His mercy;
    2. By using the saints as examples for strengthening our faith;
    3. By imitating their faith and other virtues

    So the best way to honour God through the BVM is not by praying to her, but by following her example, and thanking God for her being the Mother of God (by God's grace, of course).
     
  18. Riff

    Riff TristanCross

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    ,
     
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2011
  19. Mark_Sam

    Mark_Sam Newbie

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    Hmm ... I kinda like that rosary prayer. Is this an old prayer, or a new one?

    EDIT: It would also be interesting to see if this prayer was made by Catholics-turned-Lutheran who need a substitute after praying the rosary for years, or by life-long Lutherans who seek back to tradition.
     
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2011
  20. Bryne

    Bryne Simul Justus et Peccator

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    I first saw this on a site called Orthodox Lutheran. The person who ran that site has since become Catholic and took his site down. I believe he was a life-long Lutheran prior to that.

    I miss the site. It had some good articles.