August 2018 Letter

St. Mary, the Mother of Our Lord


St. Mary, the mother of Jesus, is mentioned repeatedly in the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, & John and the Book of Acts, with nearly a dozen specific incidents in her life being recorded: her betrothal to Joseph; the annunciation by the angel Gabriel that she was to be the mother of the Messiah; her visitation to Elizabeth, the mother of John the Baptizer; the nativity of our Lord; the visits of the shepherds and the Wise Men; the presentation of the infant Jesus in the temple; the flight (from King Herod the Great) into Egypt; the Passover visit to Jerusalem when Jesus was twelve; the wedding at Cana in Galilee; her presence at the crucifixion, when her Son commended her to the care of His disciple John; and her gathering in the Upper Room after the ascension, waiting for the promised Holy Spirit. Thus, she is present at most of the notable events in her Son’s life.


She is especially remembered and honored for her unconditional obedience to the will of God (“Let it be to me according to Your Word” [Luke 1:38]); for her loyalty to her Son even when she did not understand Him (“Do whatever He tells you” [John 2:1-11); and above all for the highest honor that heaven bestowed on her of being the mother of our Lord (“Blessed are you among women” [Luke 1:42]). According to tradition, Mary went with the apostle John to Ephesus, after the Day of Pentecost, where she later died.


While we recognize the importance of St. Mary on her festival day of August 15th each Church year, we also keep in mind the teachings of the Bible in Exodus 20:3-5a and Luther’s Small Catechism—3 “You shall have no other gods before me. 4 “You shall not make for yourself a carved image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. 5a You shall not bow down to them or serve them, for I the Lord your God am a jealous God,” and by praying “only to the one true God, the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit (and not to idols, ancestors, saints, angels, or anything else that God has created).”


Almighty God, You chose the virgin Mary to be the mother of Your Only Son. Grant that we, who are redeemed by His blood, may share with her in the glory of Your eternal kingdom; through Jesus Christ, Your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.


August Blessings!


Pastor David A. Feddern