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The Roman Catholic Church says that the Blessed Virgin Mary was conceived without sin. The Church because our representative Adam sinned against God we as a result are conceived as sinners.  Mary was an exception and lived a sinless life as a result of being conceived and born holy. She is the Queen of Heaven and she is the person who is the highest of God’s creatures and she reigns over the angels. It says she was the Mother of God when she gave birth to Jesus Christ who was conceived without a man and by the power of the Holy Spirit. Mary was supposedly a lifelong virgin and had no other children. God took her body to heaven so she is there now.

A lot of that comes from chapter 12 of the Book of Revelation where a pregnant woman who is a sign in Heaven with the sun for a dress and a crown of twelve stars has her baby, Jesus the Messiah King, and he is taken away to God's throne to avoid being eaten up by Satan and she goes off to hide in the wilderness.  Satan's tail sweeps down a third of the stars of Heaven indicating how godlike in power he is. 

It is interesting how Christians think holy things deter demons and scare them off when Satan in the form of a dragon was going to eat this baby who is supposedly God's Son or God incarnate?  Satan can take holy communion then so he must be faking his fear of the wafer during Catholic exorcisms!

Anyway Satan after going after the baby is thrown out of Heaven by Michael to the earth and then he looks for the woman again.  He tries to drown her but a miracle saves her so he gives up and goes off to war against the rest of her children. 

The woman is not allowed to raise her child in Heaven.  Her and her other children are dumped on earth.  And so is Satan!  She is treated like an unfit mother and a prisoner.  She does not match Catholicism's version of Mary who had no children but Jesus.   Her boy is not even said to be her firstborn and who fathered the other children?

 Back to Catholic teaching on Mary.  She is a hypersaint.  But was Mary really that holy?

If Mary was a bad woman or nothing special, that shows believers in the supernatural that her deceiving spirit may have appeared at places like Lourdes, Fatima, Garabandal, Necedah and Medjugorje while pretending to be the sinless Queen of Heaven. She would be seen as a demon from Hell appearing to mislead people and to get honoured. Indeed, her seeming apparition in Rwanda has led to much bloodshed.  The Bible says a prophet who gets the future wrong is not from God and Mary predicted things at some apparitions that did not come true and were proven false. Also, if Lucia really believed the entity she witnessed at Fatima was the holy Virgin why did Lucia lie about so much and give out predictions of the future AFTER the event? Garabandal is known for saying a priest would see the great miracle but he died and there is no sign of this miracle. The Roman Church dismisses any apparition that does not fit its theology or what it wants to believe about Mary. There are many apparitions of Mary in which she threatens or boasts or tells lies but the Church won't even check them out.

What if they really are of Mary?  Just because a Mary apparition seems demonic does not mean it is not her.  What if she is a demon?

Many Catholics expect Mary to give orders to God. But others say that Mary is asked to intercede by God and she obeys so God does not obey her but she obeys him. But that is not interceding. Interceding is getting an authority to help who does not want to help. The doctrine that God does not obey Mary is just a cover. It does not describe how Catholics practice devotion to Mary.

The Church says that we honour God when we honour Mary for we honour her for her total love for God since the first moment of her existence. Honouring Mary does not necessarily involve praying to her or asking her for prayers. Mary was honoured when a woman cried out to Jesus one time that the womb that bore him and the breasts that he sucked were blessed but Jesus dismissed this and said it was more important to be blessed for obeying God. The implication was that Mary was not perfect. Catholicism says that it is different to honour Mary now that she is in Heaven but she was on earth then. It says that was why Jesus objected - you pray to saints not when they are on earth but when they are in Heaven. But Mary being on earth or in Heaven would be irrelevant. What is relevant is her entitlement to honour for giving God her son Jesus as his servant. They then claim that the problem was that the woman was just praising the womb and the breasts for physically producing Jesus and had no concern for anything spiritual such as Mary obeying the will of God. So if the woman had said, "Blessed is the womb that bore you and the breasts that you sucked for because of that holy mother we have you, the perfect servant of God who does his will" it would have been different. But this overlooks that the woman was on about spiritual stuff. She was praying for she said "Blessed [meaning by God] is the womb and the breasts". She meant the mother was holy and blessed for giving Jesus.

Mary is not a great role-model. She is a turn-off if you go to her for her inspirational example. As Buddha's disciple Ananda said, you may have to let yourself be a little haughty in order to overcome haughtiness. Real men and real women need to do wrong to a point to stop doing wrong. If you abstain from food because you are dieting, food is all you will think about. Better to eat a little at least. Same and sane principle.

In 1854, Pope Pius IX infallibly proclaimed that the Virgin Mary had been conceived without sin and lived without sin all her life. From that day, belief in the doctrine is binding on Catholics and they are obligated to believe in it and it is necessary for salvation. Infallibility only works if tradition states that the doctrine is true. But the closest tradition to Jesus and the apostles actually refutes the immaculate conception.

Tradition does not comfort believers in Marian impeccability. There was and is no evidence that it was taught by the apostles. The idea was first suggested by Gnostics who regarded Mary as an incarnation of the wisdom of God and therefore sinless (page 34, Traditional Doctrines of the Roman Catholic Church Examined). All the early fathers took the line that Mary was conceived in original sin for she was born of sex (Vicars of Christ, page 333). And reason said that if Jesus needed a sinless mother to be born free from original sin that God could have preserved him from it the way the pope said he did Mary. Pope Pius IX infallibly declared Mary to be sinless at her conception. He was guessing. He was not infallible.

Irenaeus said that Jesus had to put his mother in her place for pressuring him to do something about the wine shortage at the Cana wedding. Tertullian said that Jesus had to chastise Mary for unbelief. Origen, St Basil the Great and St Jerome even went as far as to say that the sword that Simeon said would pierce the soul of Mary was a symbol for unbelief which was universally regarded as a sin in the Church in those days and still is among knowledgeable Christians. Augustine said that Mary and her family hindered Jesus when they came looking for him on one occasion and so Jesus refused to meet with them for that reason to teach them and us a lesson.

Jesus might have chosen an exceptionally wicked woman to be his mother so that all who perceived his holiness would marvel at the grace of God that kept him from turning out like her.

Paul says that all sinned and none avoids sin in Romans (3) and since he was speaking to a Church that was so ignorant that it did not understand his foundational doctrine that faith alone saves as in that grace is strongest where there is the most sin so all must mean literally all except Jesus who Romans seems to say never sinned. That shows Paul would have expressly stated that the Virgin Mary was exempt if she had been for when they did not know the important doctrine they would have taken him to mean that Mary was declared sinful too.

Rome does not worry about that, contending that Mary is an obvious exception and that we are meant to except her. Even if the Bible had to be supplemented by tradition it would make it clear that the exception is in itself. The Bible can be made to teach almost anything if people are going to assume that this general statement has such and such an exception and so on.

The Jewish traditions about Mary is that she was a hairdresser of loose morals who had sex with a Roman soldier who fathered her baby. The convincing thing is that they picked on her and not Jesus who they supposedly hated. And that in an age before devotion to Mary become widespread. The gospels speak of Jesus being called a bastard. Matthew in his gospel went out of his way to put disreputable women in Jesus's family tree. It seems that people knew Mary was not a virtuous virgin and Matthew wanted to do damage limitation by arguing that she was not the only one in Jesus' lineage. Mary sacrificed in the temple to atone for the dirtiness of having Jesus. Luke says she sacrificed. The Church says she did not need to. But that is only speculation. Luke says nothing to indicate that she did not need to. You would think he would have said if she hadn't.

There is positive evidence against the notion that Mary was never ever tainted with sin.

Most Christians think there is nobody like the “noble” Virgin Mary even if they don’t pray to her. Rome says that she has always been impeccable and is now the creature that is next to God.

Unfortunately for Roman Catholicism, the author of Matthew’s gospel didn’t think much of her at all. He told two stories to show her up as cold and smug in the extreme.

Matthew called Joseph an upright man though he wouldn’t turn Mary in to pay the penalty of the law when he thought she was pregnant because of adultery (Matthew 1:19). That is an affront to the women who had died by this law with his approval. Joseph was acting like a hypocrite. Mary whose pregnancy was visible would have told him to obey the law if he believed she had broken it and put her trust in God to rescue her and her baby. She must have known what he was thinking.

Mary was also one for going out of her way to lie. She married Joseph. Marriage is for sex. The only thing that can invalidate marriage if the vows were valid is non-consummation. Marriage is the giving of body as well as heart and because the heart can change it is more giving of the body. By taking Joseph to be her lawful wedded spouse while intending not to let him near her Mary was lying to the whole community merely by being at the ceremony, to their families and possibly to her husband. Though women did not take vows as such, she was making an oath to God merely by being present. She made an oath which she did not intend to keep. If she really did contract a mock-marriage with Joseph he would not have believed her when she said her baby was fathered by the Holy Spirit because she was a deceitful person. She made it unlawful for Joseph to desire sex with her for she refused him. It is a sin to tantalise a man with unlawful sex. By marrying Joseph and staying with him, Mary did that to him. Her cruelty and falseness are not great credentials for her story of the annunciation which the Catholic Church says could only have started with her. And Joseph was no better than she was if he married her with his eyes open. His story of the angel telling him that Mary had conceived by God is therefore dubious.

If Mary and Joseph agreed to have relations at their wedding and subsequently changed their minds and took vows of continence then we have them taking unlawful vows for they broke the sacred promise of marriage. They turned it into deceit. Matthew termed the magi deceivers for deciding to break their promise to Herod for a grave reason.

Mary should have broken off her engagement to Joseph if she agreed to have God’s baby without a man if she could not obtain his consent and approval. Matthew says that Joseph did not know who the father was. She treated him as if he had no rights.

Mary was annoyed and upset when the angel Gabriel told her that she was highly favoured and that the Lord was with her (Luke 1:29). We are told in the account that this was her reaction not to the angel but to his greeting and she wondered what it meant. Obviously it was news to her that there was anything special about her. She did not see herself as sinless. She even could not imagine how the Lord who is rejected by sinners and not with sinners could be with her. At least she knew what she was a sinner! Also, it is likely that the greeting may have implied some divine mission for her so Mary was afraid of being made a better person. She certainly assumed that this being was from Heaven and was not a demon pretending to be an angel.

Some think that, “Mary may or may not have contradicted the angel after he told her that she would have a baby when she asked him how she being a virgin could have one.” But she certainly contradicted him. If we don’t know for sure, is it right to be as cocksure as a Catholic that she wouldn’t argue? Also Mary had never been told that she didn’t need a man. The angel never said she didn’t after this question strongly suggesting that she was being sarcastic for there is no need to answer sarcasm that is expressed in such a way that you know the person knows you are right. The angel would still speak of the overshadowing and the descent of the Holy Spirit making the child the holy Son of God which he did after, if Mary conceived by a man for Son of God meant godly man. The angel does not specify how she will get pregnant so we should take him to have the normal way in mind. She was saying no child of hers could be the holiest person ever.

Elizabeth told Mary that she felt so unworthy that the mother of the Lord came to her. The Church says there was no sin in Mary not refusing this compliment for it was not a compliment to Mary but to her child. I can say, “Who am I that the car of my Lord has come to me?” I am not grovelling before the car but the Lord.

But it is not cars we are talking about but persons. She said that she was honoured by the mother.

Mary told Elizabeth that God is her saviour who has shown her mercy. If it is wrong to praise one’s own good works as the same gospel says (Luke 18:9-14) it is likewise wrong to boast that one is saved for that means that one is saying one is good and reformed now. She was a pompous young lady.

Mary worried about Jesus when she lost him in Jerusalem for three days. Worry is a sin especially when it is God’s son that one is in a state about for it implies that God is thought to be incompetent. That she looked for him at all was a sin.

Mark wrote that Jesus’ family went to seize him thinking that he was mental. Later he said that they arrived and that his mother was there. She was participating in a plan to silence Jesus and discredit his ministry. It would have been a terrible sin for Mary who knowing that Jesus was God’s son to start calling him mental. Some say that Mark was writing to people who knew that Mary was united in heart and soul with Jesus and who knew not to include her when he wrote about Jesus’ family violently opposing his ways. Mark is a very simple gospel with very elementary doctrine. Does it really look like something that was composed for experts in the Christian faith? “Family” includes Mary.

Matthew 13 has people asking how Jesus could be so wise and do great things when you think about what he had for a father, mother, brothers and sisters. The implication is that none of them are in any way special - indeed far from it.

In John 2, we read of the famous wedding of Cana. At the reception, Mary told Jesus that the wine had run out. Jesus’ sharp reply shows that this was said in a bossy go-and-do-something-about-it tone. He put her in her place. He would not have corrected her if she forgot her place as a subordinate to the Son of God for he would have realised that it was just a mistake. She was insolently patronising him. He replied that his hour had not come. The Church irrelevantly says he meant that the hour of his death and resurrection hadn't come. Jesus simply meant, "It is not the time for me to help." But he lied. He did help. If Jesus was a good man, then he lied to his mother for the gravest of reasons. She was such an evil woman she gave him no choice. The story doesn't say why he felt he had no choice but believers can be sure that his mother was a dangerous woman.

The gospels say the Jews hated Jesus. But in the Talmud and in Jewish tradition from the early Christian period before Mary was turned into a near-divinity, the Jews seemed interested beyond belief in portraying Jesus' mother as a dissolute bad girl when they could have spent the ink on attacking Jesus. They had no need to do that for many Christians would have thought that if Jesus' mother was bad that only shows how good Jesus was in resisting the bad influence. They picked on her for they knew what she was - bad news . The stories seem plausible. There is even some gospel support that Mary was a bad cookie.

The Jews had no problem believing Jesus' mother had illicit sex to produce him. If such accusations surfaced, it was easy for her to prove her virginity if she was indeed a virgin for life as the Catholic Church says. There were women appointed to check out women who claimed to be virgins. Jesus never denied that he was illegitimate. Christians say that he was legitimate because he had no human father. He did not expect anybody who knew his mother to believe that he was legitimate. What kind of woman must she have been?

Jesus experienced total desolation on the cross and felt abandoned by God and all his friends had abandoned him. He cried out that God had forsaken him. The gospels speak of the women who followed him standing watching at a distance. Psalm 22 where the man speaking in the person of Jesus according to the gospels says that all who see him mock and deride him would indicate that they were not there out of compassion. John alone says that Mary Jesus' mother was at the cross. It does not say she was there in any supportive sense. The Psalm and Jesus' desolation would indicate that she was not supportive at all but probably gloating.

Mary was a sinner. She must find Rome’s exalted notions about her utterly offensive now – supposing she is a saint in Heaven that is.

In the Gospel of Matthew we read that King Herod killed all the baby boys of two and under in Bethlehem because astrologers told him the Messiah, his rival, was born there.

Mary and Joseph and the baby Jesus were in Bethlehem since the birth of Jesus the Messiah.

The astrologers visited them there and after they left the "holy" family went into hiding in Egypt for they were informed that Herod was going to have the child murdered.

Herod’s soldiers invaded the village and killed all boys two and under in it and in its environs.

Matthew makes no comment on the strangeness of Herod having the children in Bethlehem and roundabout when he had no reason to think the baby was still there. Some time had elapsed since the birth. Why not kill all the boys two and under in the nation to make sure?
Here is the account:

Revised Standard Version (RSV) Matthew 2
2 Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, wise men from the East came to Jerusalem, saying, 2 “Where is he who has been born king of the Jews? For we have seen his star in the East, and have come to worship him.” 3 When Herod the king heard this, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him; 4 and assembling all the chief priests and scribes of the people, he inquired of them where the Christ was to be born. 5 They told him, “In Bethlehem of Judea; for so it is written by the prophet:
6 ‘And you, O Bethlehem, in the land of Judah,
are by no means least among the rulers of Judah;
for from you shall come a ruler
who will govern my people Israel.’”
7 Then Herod summoned the wise men secretly and ascertained from them what time the star appeared; 8 and he sent them to Bethlehem, saying, “Go and search diligently for the child, and when you have found him bring me word, that I too may come and worship him.” 9 When they had heard the king they went their way; and lo, the star which they had seen in the East went before them, till it came to rest over the place where the child was. 10 When they saw the star, they rejoiced exceedingly with great joy; 11 and going into the house they saw the child with Mary his mother, and they fell down and worshiped him. Then, opening their treasures, they offered him gifts, gold and frankincense and myrrh. 12 And being warned in a dream not to return to Herod, they departed to their own country by another way.
13 Now when they had departed, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream and said, “Rise, take the child and his mother, and flee to Egypt, and remain there till I tell you; for Herod is about to search for the child, to destroy him.” 14 And he rose and took the child and his mother by night, and departed to Egypt, 15 and remained there until the death of Herod. This was to fulfil what the Lord had spoken by the prophet, “Out of Egypt have I called my son.” 16 Then Herod, when he saw that he had been tricked by the wise men, was in a furious rage, and he sent and killed all the male children in Bethlehem and in all that region who were two years old or under, according to the time which he had ascertained from the wise men. 17 Then was fulfilled what was spoken by the prophet Jeremiah:
18 “A voice was heard in Ramah,
wailing and loud lamentation,
Rachel weeping for her children;
she refused to be consoled,
because they were no more.”
19 But when Herod died, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared in a dream to Joseph in Egypt, saying, 20 “Rise, take the child and his mother, and go to the land of Israel, for those who sought the child’s life are dead.” 21 And he rose and took the child and his mother, and went to the land of Israel.
Interesting story!
* Mary and Joseph escaped to Egypt with baby Jesus. The massacre was their fault.
Matthew infers that Mary and Joseph hid the child and his identity all the time they were in Bethlehem. Why else would Herod have had to order the slaughter of all the babies of Bethlehem? It looks like there was no child in the area suspected of being the Messiah and nobody could even tell Herod's men that a couple had vanished with a child.

Mary and Joseph knew from the magi that Herod and the city were disturbed at the news of the birth. They knew that Herod and Jerusalem believed that baby was Herod’s rival. They knew that Herod told the magi to come back and say where the baby was. They knew that he did not want to know that for a noble reason.

They should have left Bethlehem when the astrologers told them that Herod knew about the child. They should have sent them back to him to tell him that the family had fled. That was the kindest solution.

They could have sent Herod a letter that they were gone and not to bother sending his men in search of the child.
They could have told others that their baby was the Messiah and then left so that those people would be able to tell Herod and his men that they were too late if they came looking.

Mary and Joseph could have told the Magi to go back and tell Herod they had made a mistake and there was no child. Herod only attacked the babies because the magi were not coming back and he had no way of knowing who the right child was. Obviously, the Magi must have dressed like ordinary Israelites - they didn't stand out like they do on the Christmas cards!

Joseph and Mary knew what Herod was like. They knew that if he was going to kill the infant Messiah that he would have to kill all the male infants for nobody knew which was which. They knew the paranoid beast would plot to kill their child that way for he couldn’t stomach rivals. They didn’t care.
* Why did Herod and his men who knew about the star not follow it too? Why did nobody expect them to appear at the place where the child was? It seems that Mary and Joseph must have expected him to if there was a star. They were safe and that was all they cared about. They didn't warn anybody else!

* It was only when Herod started to have Bethlehem searched for the baby Jesus, that Mary and Joseph fled to Egypt with the child. When they left it so late instead of going earlier they were not scared of Herod and confident that they would escape. They had a safe haven when they could run at the last minute. Their tardiness resulted only in death for others.

Mary and Joseph should have warned the other villagers about Herod’s plan to kill the babies. Joseph had heard all about it in a dream. When they had such a good hiding place, telling would not have led to their own destruction.
* Mary and Joseph or both could have stayed to stop the massacre and sent the infant away with somebody else. If they had told the soldiers about the visit of the magi who Herod had also met they could have convinced them and averted the massacre.
Herod would not have been able to tell from the Bethlehem census if there was a missing baby for Mary was pregnant when the census was taken. But if there had been a census as only Luke reports, there would have been no massacre because there would have been too many people visiting the town to enrol who could have had babies there and gone home. There was no point in searching Bethlehem for a baby that was probably already gone. If Herod really massacred the baby boys of Bethlehem he would have had to go after all the families that visited Bethlehem too. There is no evidence at all that the extremely improbable massacre really happened.
Mary and Joseph just didn’t give a toss about the children who died so they were as hard-hearted as a statue of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. They were worse than Herod for they knew they could get away with what they wanted to happen better than even Herod could and the dirty work would be Herod’s.
The story of the massacre is incoherent. As paranoid as Herod was, he was not going to get the people to go with him in a bid to eradicate a Messiah who was only a baby with poor parents with no verifiable royal bloodline and who might not have been in Bethlehem any more. If he had been that demented he wouldn’t have been able to rule at all.  It is only nonsense to point to his murder of his beloved Mariamme as evidence that he lashed out murderously at all possible contenders or conspirators. Random attacks over his paranoia were not his style.  If he listened to astrologers then it was time for the straitjacket.
But it remains true that Matthew was sure that Mary and Joseph were evil people and guilty of what he accused them of. If they did not cause a massacre then their movements could have caused one. These movements could be history. Matthew believed that they were capable of tremendous frightful evil and that is the important thing even if the story is legendary.

From Jubilee 2000 Bible
1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with the God, and the Word was God.
2 The same was in the beginning with the God.
3 All things were made by him, and without him was not any thing made that was made.
4 In him was life, and the life was the light of men.
5 And the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness apprehended it not.
6 There was a man sent from God, whose name was John.
7 The same came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all men through him might believe.
8 He was not the Light, but was sent to bear witness of the Light.
9 That Word was the true Light, which lightens every man that comes into this world.
10 He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not.
11 He came unto his own, and his own received him not.
12 But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become sons of God, even to them that believe on his name,
13 who are not born of blood, nor of the will of flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.
Jesus came to his own. This is thought to refer to the Jews. But the context does not say that at all. The line before talks about all people - that is, the world.
He says that Jesus came to his own and his own rejected him. But those who accepted him became God's children without it having anything to do with how they were born into this world. So we read then that being related to Jesus does not make you a child of God. Is it saying that some people from Jesus' family accepted him? No. It says that his own rejected him and that many - meaning non-family members did accept him. That this rather random fact had to be preserved for us in a hymn indicates that the family never came round.
John the Baptist is described as a believer in John indicating that John unlike the Luke Gospel, has not heard of the allegation that Jesus and John were related. Or he is denying it.
The Virgin Mary was not the best woman ever. She committed lots of wrongs or sins if you like.
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BORN FUNDAMENTALIST, BORN-AGAIN CATHOLIC, David B Currie, Ignatius Press, San Francisco, 1996
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OBJECTIONS TO ROMAN CATHOLICISM, Ed by Michael de la Bedoyere, Constable, London, 1964
POPE FICTION, Patrick Madrid, Basilica Press, San Diego, California, 1999
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