Page 12, 7th January 1938

7th January 1938
Page 12
Page 12, 7th January 1938 — Reply To Fr.
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Reply To Fr.

Vincent McNabb, O.P.

(Continued from page 5) out the teachings of the Popes and Fr. McNabb's conclusions side by side.

The Teaching of the Sovereign Pontiffs

Pius X invests with his authority the maxim of the theologians.

" Mary merited by a merit of suitability (de congruo) all that Christ merited by a merit of justice (de condign)," in the Encyclical Ad diem ilium (1911) for the fiftieth anniversary of the definition of the Immaculate Conception : " It was the Biassed Virgin's office to guard and nourish the victim and, on the appointed day, to present It at the altar. Thus the Mother and Son were always closely associated in their life and labours . . . When the Son's last hour had come there stood beside the Cross of Jesus, His Mother . . . In consequence of this union of will and sufferings between Jesus and Mary, She merited most worthily to become the Reparatrix of fallen humanity ' (Eadmeri Mon. De Excellentia Virg. Mariae c. IX) and in consequence the Dispenser of all the treasures Jesus won for us by His death and the shedding of His Blood. " We do not of course deny that the right to dispense these treasures belongs exclusively to Jesus Christ, and since they were acquired for us by His Death ?done, He alone has the power to act as Mediator between Clod and man. Nevertheless by reason of the community of sorrows and hardship between Mother and Son, of which we have spoken, it was given the august Virgin to be ' the meat powerful Mediatrix and Reconciler of the whole world with her Son (Pius IX in Bull Ineffabilis). " Christ then is the source and of His fullness we all have received' (St. John, i. 15) . . . But Mary, as St. Bernard aptly remarks, is the aqueduct, or rather, the neck by which the body is joined to the head and by which the head exercises its power and influence on the body. For she is the neck of our Head and through her all spiritual gifts are communicated to His mystical Body. (St. Bernardine of Siena). It is thus quite clear that we are very far from attributing to the Mother of God the power of producing supernatural grace, a power which belongs to God alone.

" Nevertheless, since she excels all others in sanctity and in the closeness of her union with Christ and has been associated by Christ with Himself in the work of redemption, she merits by a merit of fitness (de congruo), as the theologians say, what Christ has merited by a. merit of justice (de rondigns) and she is the chief Almoner in the distribution of grace."

Benedict XV " The Passion and Death of Her Son," writes Pope Benedict XV in the Brief Inter Sodalitia," were in a certain sense Her passion and death, for She utterly surrendered Her motherly rights over Jesus. So far as the matter depended upon Her, She offered Her Son so generously in sacrifice to satisfy the justice of God that it may be said with reason that She co-operated in the salvation of the human race along with Christ " (Ipsarn cum Christo Humanum Genus redemisse).

Thus we see the Sovereign Pontiffs' teaching that Jesus redeemed His Mother in such a way that once redeemed Herself, She shares with Him in the redemption of the rest of mankind and is inseparably associated with Him in the work of salvation.

According to Pope Pius X Our Blessed Lady is Co-Reparatrix and Dispenser (Dispensatrix) and Almoner-in-chief (Princeps Ministra) of the whole treasure of grace.

Fr. McNabb must now inform us if he accepts the teaching of Pope Pius X and Pope Benedict XV. He must then inform us what position exactly he assigns to Our Lady in the economy of salvation. Lastly, he must show us where exactly Fr. Le Rohellec's theology is not in harmony with the teaching of the Church. We want definite proofs. The Eighth Commandment is binding even upon theologians and journalists.

Fr. McNabb's statement, " No creature can help God to be the cause of an effect," as it stands, eliminates the action of the Sacred Humanity of Our Lord as the Instrument of His Divinity in the production of the Divine Life of Grace in our souls. Our Lord's Sacred Humanity is the conjoint or associated Instrument of His Divinity, to use St. Thomas's beautiful expression. " The Sovereign Pontiff, Pius X, in his Encyclical Ad diem ilium, declares that Mary does not produce grace, but it Is evident that he is speaking of the causality of the Principal Cause. For he adds that this power belongs to God alone. The Pope, however, did not mean to deny the Instrumental Causality of Our Lord." (Fr. Hugon, O.P., La Causalite Instrumentale en Theologie, p. 201.)

Fr. McNabb will have to explain his statement in such a way as not to attack either Our Lord's Instrumental Causality or our Mother's action in regard to sacramental grace.

(To be concluded.)




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