Virgin Mary and the Church by Augustine of Hippo

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“Mary is holy, Mary is blessed, but the Church is better than the Virgin Mary. Why? Because Mary is part of the Church, a holy member, an outstanding member, a supereminent member, but a member of the whole body nonetheless. If she is a member of the whole body, the body is undoubtedly greater than one of its members.”

Augustine of Hippo, Cf. S. J. Grabowski, The Church: An Introduction to the Theology of St. Augustine (St. Louis, Mo., 1957).

Our Lord Jesus Christ instituted the Church with his death on the cross. When we die and rise with Him, in Baptism and through daily works of repentance, we become saints in the Holy Church. In this sense the Church is our mother and she has given birth to us through her womb, in the Baptism.

If you are interested in more quotes on Virgin Mary, you can find them in Mary and the Fathers of the Church on Amazon in both Kindle and paperback formats.


Gambero, L., 1999. Mary and the Fathers of the Church 1st ed. Translated by Buffer, T., San Francisco: Ignatius Press.

2 Comments on “Virgin Mary and the Church by Augustine of Hippo”

  1. The Protestant theologian Karl Barth rightly stated: “Jesus himself is the kingdom, he was the kingdom, and will be the kingdom, and in him exists the entire establishment, all the salvation, all the joy of the kingdom.” “The identity between Church and kingdom,” Christoph Cardinal Schonborn says, “has its basis in Christ,” yet “there is no higher concretization of this identity for the Church than the Mother of God. It would not be possible to assert this identity if its only basis was Christ, the Head of the Church, and there was no real perfect correspondence on the side of the members of the Church (Mystical Body of Christ) … If Mary did not exist in the Church, then there would be a distance between the Church and the kingdom, because of the presence of sinners in the Church… In Mary, the most perfect member of the Church, we can contemplate the Church’s true nature… ‘As the Mother of Jesus… is the image and the beginning of the Church, which will be perfected in the world to come, so she also shines here on earth in the intermediary time until the day of the Lord comes… as a sign of sure hope and of consolation to the people of God on its pilgrim way’” (Lumen Gentium 58).

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