Mother of Healing
Mary of Nazareth, mother of Jesus the Christ, is an icon of healing throughout the world today. Mary's human life of deep spiritual faith and compassion has made an indelible mark on the history of humanity.
Since Mary's departure into heaven, she continues to make her presence known above all, as a healer. She carries out influential healing and is a guiding presence here to many on earth. Indeed, she is known as Stella Maris or'Star of the Sea'.
Stella Maris or Sea-Star is a name of Ursae Minoris or Polaris, the guiding star [also lodestar, ship star or steering star].
It is so known because this pivotal star has been used for celestial navigation since antiquity. Many in medieval times envisioned Mary as a devoted Mother to the Son of God.
They believed she held His wellbeing and that of the Kingdom of God above all else.
They also envisaged Mary as a guiding light on the journey to her Son in Heaven.
In the ninth century Paschasius Radbertus wrote that Mary, Star of the Sea, is a guide to be followed on the way to Christ.
Mary of Nazareth was chosen by God to be the human tabernacle of The Most High.
Since then, dear Reader, she has continued to enthrall succeeding generations of humanity with her healing and motherly powers.
Mary is a symbol of the Divine Feminine; a connection with the ancient ways of being a woman.
The Divine Feminine draws energy from the Creative and Energising Principle within God.
Mary - Icon of the Divine Feminine - has continually visited people down the centuries.
She has brought healing, hope and re-introduction to her Divine Son to countless nations.
How did the healing powers and fame of this humble girl from Nazareth come about?
Birthplace of Divine Healing
The justly famed village of Nazareth in Israel lies in a hollow in the hills twelve miles southwest of the Sea of Galilee. It is a small town built on porous rock.
As well as the town buildings, there were underground cisterns for water, vats for oil and silos for grain. There was a single, ancient spring for water.
In this conservative town which clung to traditional Jewish culture lived a young woman.
She spoke Aramaic and lived her life with pride in her heritage.
She knew that Salome Alexandra - a Jewish Queen in the previous century - had made reading and writing compulsory for all Jewish boys so they could study the Torah.
She herself soaked in knowledge of the ancient scriptures.
She pondered on ancient prophecies that a virgin would give birth to the Messiah.
Ancient Torah prophecies had foretold that God promised to send a Messiah to Israel, who would bring healing to the peoples. 1
As the woman worked in her parental home and helped with spinning, weaving and food preparation, she discovered other talents hidden within herself - healing, wisdom and prophecy.
The woman was Mary the Mother of Jesus Christ; known to many today as the Mother of Healing.
Mary, Healer in Nazareth
The history of Mariam bat Joachim [Mary the daughter of Joachim] is that of healer.
In an age where infant mortality was high, the young Jesus survived healthily to adulthood.
The houses of Nazareth incorporated a garden where herbs were traditionally grown.
The main meal of Nazarenes was often eaten in the evening.
The meal often consisted of a lentil stew seasoned with herbs like cumin or coriander.
It was served with cheese made from sheep or goats' milk, olives, onions and bread.
Fruit included fresh figs or melon, as well as dried pomegranates and dates.
Wine, water and curdled milk accompanied the meal.
Fish - especially dried fish - was common; meat was kept for special occasions.
So Mary had experience in growing herbs for meals, and would doubtless have learned to use them in home herbal healing.
When Mary became pregnant with Jesus and wed, she would have had the rural herbs at her fingertips.
The visitors from the East gifted her little family with the herbs frankincense and myrrh. These herbs would have been helpful in the family's travel chest for healing ailments.
Mary had been entrusted by God with the task of safely nurturing and educating Jesus.
Her discerning eyes and wisdom of intellect watched her Son over the years, probing His abilities, guiding Him and teaching Him what He needed to know to approach His Messianic destiny.
And Mary - Mother of Healing - began to coach Jesus in His healing abilities and to tap the power from within Himself.
She guided His youthful efforts and supported Him as His practice at miracles and healing became ever firmer and more confident.
Mary - a healer herself - was the one who approached her Son to save a bridal couple from embarrassment. 2
Jesus turned water into wine for the feast, somewhat reluctantly.
It is a strange first public miracle and carried out before God had given the word for the public phase of the Messianic Ministry to begin.
Mary, Mother of healing, coaxed her Son into showing His previously hidden powers in public; thus launching Him prematurely into His ministry of miracles and healings.
The Nazarene Man changed the composition of water [H2O] with the differing chemical composition of white wine.
From H20 the complex mix included Ethanol [C2H5OH] and other chemicals.
This complicated miracle was done simply in order to please His Mother and comfort a newly wedded couple.
This miracle shows a facet of Jesus' nature nurtured from His healer Mother; He had a son's love for his mother, and a compassionate heart for the troubles of others.
This occurrence showed that as regards ability and compassionate Heart, Jesus certainly had a lot hidden up His sleeve ready to face both challenges of major healings and the apparent irreversibility of human death . . .
Healer down the Centuries
Once Christ completed His Life, Messianic Ministry and Resurrection, Mary was left on earth.
She continued her healing work while supporting the disciples and inspiring strength in the new church.
Mary emotionally supported the disciples as they prayed for guidance; and prayed for the Holy Spirit of God to descend upon them. 3
Mary eventually died - but she did not pass into oblivion. Mother Mary thereafter became very active here on the earth plane, and began to regularly visit people down the centuries.
Mary brings healing, and many cases have been documented giving evidence to this.
When Mother Mary appears she always has a message to deliver; her visitations and messages are known as Marian Apparitions, and those publicly known show she has a busy itinerary. 4
The first Marian apparition was recorded by the Apostle James in Zaragoza, Spain, in AD 39. Mary visited him on a spiritual plane while she was still alive on earth.
Many apparitions have since occurred in places all over the world. Examples of the countries visited are Mexico, France, Portugal, Africa.
Mary is still active in our present day. Besides apparitional visitis, she speaks to us through an inner voice and in dreams.
Mary is closely linked with healings, often miraculous healings.
Visions and dreams of Mother Mary are her way of letting us know that she is right here, next to us, as a lovingly watchful parent.
Channels of Marian Healing
Reader, the Virgin Mary has a long history of healing. Since the famous apparitions of Mary near a freshly awakened spring in a cave, Lourdes in France has had to deal with about 7000 known cases of unexplained cures.
Sixty nine of those cases have been accepted as miraculous after investigation by the International Medical Committee of Lourdes.
Mary has miraculously cured paralysis, blindness, gangrenous ulcer, heart disease, chronic infection with vesical and colonic fistulae, tuberculosis, nervous disorder. 5, 6
It is well known that many undocumented cures have also taken place.
When Mary comes to visit, she does so for various reasons;
- Mary comes to heal
- She comes to warn
- Mary gives encouragement
- She gives proof of her presence and powers
- Mary comes in dreamtime as a loving parent
- Mary comes as a symbol of Light; pointing the way to her Son Who is the Light of the World
- Mary comes as a symbol of Water, pointing the way to her Son Who is the Living Water
- Mary comes as a symbol of Rock and Cave, pointing the way to her Son Who is our Rock and Refuge
- Mary comes to reassure us that our link as humanity with Heaven is complete; she - fully human - has become Queen of Heaven - in the fully divine
- Mary comes with request to build a sacred place of worship where people can turn to her Divine Son for comfort and salvation; and where she as loving mother can extend love, compassion, help and protection
- Mary comes to remind us to ask God for special graces in our daily lives
Mary, Medicine Woman
Mary comes to heal. In some cultures she is known as 'Medicine Woman'.
One example of healing is related in the visitation Mary made to Guadalupe.
She appeared in the form of a young pregnant woman to a man named Juan Diego. He was also known as Cuauhtlatoatzi [Talking Eagle].
Mary spoke to him in Nahuatl, his native language, as she asked him to build her a little house, a chapel, on the place where they stood talking.
This visitation by Mary took place on a hill called Tepeyac near present Mexico City in the following way.
On an early pre-dawn walk on Saturday, December 9th, 1531, Juan Diego was drawn to Tepeyac hill by the sound of beautiful birdsong such as he'd never before heard.
[ Tepeyac hill had been devoted to the worship of the Mexica earth and lunar goddess Tonantzin; an Aztec deity shrine had stood there].
Suddenly the singing stopped and a gentle woman's voice was heard from above the mount saying, 'Juanito, Juan Dieguito' - an affectionate motherly term.
Juan Diego reached Tepeyac summit and saw a Lady standing there.
The Lady - the pregnant Mary - wore combined Aztec and Spanish features on her face.
She was resplendent in celestial grandeur, and he marveled at her graciousness.
Her garments were shining like the sun. The cliff where her feet rested was pierced with glittering light.
Request for Miraculous Sign
The Lady thus spoke to him, 'Know and understand well, you the most humble of my sons, that I am the ever Virgin Holy Mary, Mother of the True God for Whom we live, of the Creator of all things, Lord of heaven and earth.
I wish that a temple be erected here quickly, so that I may therein exhibit and give all my love, compassion, help and protection, because I am your merciful mother ...
Go to the bishop of Mexico and say to him that I manifest my great desire, that here a temple be built to me.'
The young woman sent Juan Diego to the local Spanish Bishop Fray Zumarraga, to have the chapel built.
The Bishop promptly sent him back to the apparition to ask for a miraculous sign to prove her claim of being the Mother of God. [I don't think he ever thought to hear back from Juan Diego again!]
Struck by Plague
Diego avoided going back to the hill because his uncle Juan Bernardino was gravely ill. He had contracted the plague, and was near death.
His uncle having asked for the service of a priest, Diego set out to fetch a local priest.
He did not want to meet up with Mary, because he did not want his mission to be deterred.
The determined Mother of God met him on the other side of the hill and, on hearing his mission, replied; 'Do not fear this nor any other sickness or anguish. Am I, your Mother, not here? Are you not under my protection? Do not be afflicted by the illness of your uncle; he is now cured.'
Juan Bernadino related later that at that hour a beautiful Lady appeared to him, calling herself 'she who crushes the serpent'.
Juan Bernadino felt a profound peace come over his soul and a healing wave seemed to roll, filling him with strength and cooling his burning fever. He was cured.
In response to the Bishop's request, La Guadalupe instructed Diego to climb to the barren top of Tepeyac and gather the flowers there, despite the fact that it was early in December and well out of the flowering season.
It is related that Diego found not only flowers, but a wild abundance of Castilian Roses, and other rare and precious flowers.
These Diego gathered in his Agave fiber cloak called a tilma before running back to the Bishop to present the fragrant blossoms.
As he displayed the flowers to the Bishop, the roses fell from his cloak to reveal a luminous image of the Virgin imprinted on the rough cloth. 7
Gentle Mother, Fierce Warrior
The visitation of the Mother of Healing at Guadalupe shows a combination of factors.
Mary came to bring healing. She healed Juan Bernardino of a terminal case of plague.
Today a long list of miracles, cures and interventions are attributed to Our Lady of Guadalupe.
Mary also brought a request for a sacred place of worship to be built.
She came to encourage Juan Diego and the Bishop with the heavenly sign of proof of her presence and powers.
Mary came as a symbol of light, her garments shining like the sun. She rested her feet on a rock.
And she included flowers; in particular, Castilian roses.
The rose is known as the queen of flowers, and is a privileged symbol of Mary - as are lilies. Medieval paintings of Mary, rose tree in the background and contemplating a rose, is an allusion to the tree of Jesse.
Mary is the Virga Jesse - the root of Jesse bearing Jesus. 8
Jesse was the father of King David, the earthly ancestor of Jesus through Mary's Davidic royal line.
Thus the symbol of the roses declared immediately in symbolism to the Bishop that the Great Mystical Rose [Mary of Nazareth] had sent the roses as her signature.
Ancient Fertility Shrine
Mary came to link the ancient shrine of fertility earth goddess worship, to fulfilment in a new form of worship focusing on her Divine Son.
This she did by manifesting her pregnant form on the tilma.
Mary always directs all worship and honour ultimately towards the Son of God, the bringer of salvation.
She manifested fulfilment of ancient Torah prophecies and New Testament writings. 9
In the combination of mixed Aztec and Spanish features of her face, she symbolized all peoples locally as beloved by God.
Thus Mary encouraged both local people and the incoming Spanish to live peacefully in appreciation of one another as both peoples beloved by God.
Mary fulfilled ancient prophecies in Aztec culture about the Divine Feminine, the Sacred Mother.
Tonantzin means 'Our Sacred Mother' in the the Nahuatl language, and the ancient goddess worship symbolically connected to fertility and to Mother Earth.
Mary came to Tepeyac to accept the honour given to the Sacred Mother, and to fulfil the duties this celestial motherhood brings.
She came to make a place where the human children of God could find refuge and help.
Pregnant Mary symbolizes fertility as the pregnant Mother of God.
Her pregnancy affirms the both the holiness of female fertility and the holy link of male fertility with the Creator God.
Mary also symbolises Mother Earth. Her pregnancy is the link between Divinity in Heaven and humanity on Earth.
Mary thus manifested in her personage the very essence of the earth mother, the nurturer of each child with affection and concern.
Crusher of Serpents
The other side of the coin of Mary's personality is that of fierce warrior; and crusher of the plans of the most powerful of fallen angels - satan.
In her visitation at Guadalupe, Mary came to warn against the enemy of humanity, satan - one symbol of whom is the serpent, or snake.
It is believed that the name 'Guadalupe' came about because of the translation of the words used by the Mary during the apparition to Juan Bernadino, from Nahuatl to Spanish.
It is believed that Mary used the Axtec Nahuatl word of coatlaxopeuh which is pronounced 'quatlasupe' and which sounds remarkably like the Spanish word Guadalupe.
Coa meaning serpent, tla being the noun ending which can be interpreted as 'the', while xopeuh means to crush or stamp out. So Mary must have called herself the one 'who crushes the serpent'. Mary is thus clearly fulfilling the prophecy made in Genesis of the human woman whose offspring would crush satan's power. 10
Ana Castillo La Diosa de las Americas writes 'our Dark Madonna of the Americas is not a docile meek mother. She is a warrior with her roots growing deep in the Nahuatl Tonantzin of the sacred hill at Tepeyac, and deeper still her roots connect us to Coatlicue, Serpent Skirt, the darker fierce mother goddess of the Aztecs.' 11
Local belief connects Mary, Madonna of the Americas, with warrior leadership. Coatlicue, a major earth-mother goddess of the Aztecs, was the patroness of childbirth and associated with warfare, governance and agriculture.
The goddess is represented in statue form as wearing a skirt of snakes.
Mary, associated with Serpent-skirt, reflects back to the Snake of Light which will defeat the snake of darkness.
Moses in the desert lifted up the standard of a snake, and all who were bitten by poisonous snakes had only to look at it in order to miraculously live.
Jesus prophesied that just as Moses lifted up the snake in the wilderness, He would be lifted up before the nations. 12
He was lifted up on a cross and died for two reasons. First, to bring salvation.
Secondly, in order to crush the head of the serpent satan under His Heel.
So Mary, mother of the Saviour, patroness of fertility and childbirth is associated with warfare and victory against satan.
Scientific examination of Mary's visitation in Guadalupe has brought interesting facts to light.
When Juan Diego unfastened the tilma before the Bishop [he had apparently knotted the cloak around his neck in order to bring the out of season flowers he had picked], the flowers fell out on the floor before the Bishop and others with him.
An image of Mary had been imposed on the fibers of the cloak, which appeared to the startled gaze of Fray Zumarraga and those with him as the roses scattered on the floor.
This cloth was taken by the Bishop and placed in the chapel to be admired and honoured.
The celestial image was moved to the new Temple which was built on Tepeyac; it remains to this day.
Many healings have taken place before the image which is still visited by people from all over the world today.
Modern technology has attempted to solve the enigma of the tilma without success. The tilma, or cloak, is woven of a fiber which in the normal course of events, usually lasts no longer than twenty years.
It is still extant today - centuries after the image appeared in 1531.
Dr Richard Kuhn, Nobel Prize winner and Director of the Department of Chemistry of the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute, examined two of the fibers from the imaged tilma.
According to the scientific findings, the fibers - one red and the other yellow - contain no known artificial colouring; neither mineral, vegetable, animal or synthetic. 13
Scientists have been unable to find any trace of paint residue or dye of any sort on the image.
What produced the colors on Juan Diego's cloak or how they were applied remains a mystery to science.
The image still retains its original colors, even though it was unprotected by any covering during the first 100 years of its existence.
The bluish-green color of Mary's imaged mantle is unique, made of a shade unable to be matched to date.
The image is over the central seam of the cloak; Mary's slight turn to the right on the image prevented the stitch from dividing her pictured face.
Only the original seam holds the tilma still in place. The law of gravity does not usually allow a single cotton thread to hold two heavier pieces of cloth for longer than ten years; this thread has held since 1531.
Infrared radiation photography showed no paint or brush strokes; no corrections; no underlying sketch; no sizing or varnish.
Photographic enlargements of the image of Mary's face show the image of a bearded man visible in the eyes.
Investigations by leading oculists found not only the image of the bearded man, but all the optical imaging qualities of a normal human eye; such as light reflection, image positioning and distortion on the camera.
Mary's imaged mantle is covered with stars which map out various constellations as might be seen in the Mexican sky.
The 'star map' on the mantle is in reverse; providing a view of the constellations from beyond them, as would be seen looking through them towards the earth.
As Mary would have, travelling from heaven to visit Mexico.
Stunningly, the constellations are consistent with what astronomers believe was the sky above Mexico City the day the image was formed, December 12th 1531.
The tunic and mantle colors are important in the Aztec hierarchical structure; being typically reserved for the emperor.
The Queen of Heaven wears emperor's colours, and the black Aztec maternity belt denoting her pregnancy. 14
Recent gynaecological studies have identified signs of pregnancy in Mary's image, and also a special flower - the Quincunx - over the place where the heart of the unborn Child would be.
The flower is the Aztec symbol of the Lord of the Universe. 15
Mexican Center of Guadalupan Studies
In Rome Engineer Jose Aste Tonsmann of the Mexican Center of Guadalupan Studies discussed results of research into the image.
This graduate in environmental systems engineering in Cornell University has studied Mary's image on the rough maguey-fiber fabric of the tilma.
Tonsmann used a digital process used by satellites and space probes in transmitting visual information.
The eyes of the image, which - though the dimensions are microscopic - have a highly detailed picture of at least 13 people imprinted on both irises and pupils.
The same people are present in both right and left eyes, in different proportions, as would typically happen when human eyes reflect the objects before them.
Tonsmann believes it possible that the reflection transmitted by the eyes of the image is the scene on December 9th 1531, when Juan Diego showed the contents of the tilma to Bishop Zumarraga and the others present in the room.
Tonsmann added that Callahan and Smith showed how the image changes in color slightly according to the angle of viewing, a phenomenon known as iridescence and unable to be reproduced on earth at present. 16
Mary the Healer, is revered in many cultures and all over the world today. Our Lady of Guadalupe, Santa Maria is still prayed to for fertile crops, for the seasonal rains, for the healing of body and spirit through the power of the healing herbs.
Many people describe feeling her presence in times of trouble.
Mary continues to have a message for today.
Questions for the Heart and Mind
1. Why do you think Mary of Nazareth was chosen by God to be so closely linked to healing?
2. Have you experienced a healing in your life?
3. Why do you think Mary chose to entrust Juan Diego and Juan Bernardino with her message?
4. In what way do you see yourself bringing healing to others through your life's ministry?
1. Malachi 4:2
2. John 2; 1-11
3. Acts 1;14 & Acts 2
4. The Miracle Hunter. 2012. Marian Apparitions. www. miraclehunter.com. marian_apparitions
5. Sanctuaire Notre-Dame de Lourdes. Miraculous cures in Lourdes. en - lourdes- france. org/ deepen/ cures-and-miracles / miraculous - cures - in - lourdes
6. The Miracle Hunter. 2012. List of Approved Lourdes Miracles. www. miraclehunter.com. marian_apparitions / approved_apparitions / lourdes / miracles1. html#latapie
7. Hardin, Kiva Rose. Our Lady of Guadalupe: Medicine Woman of the Americas. Moss & Mezcal Botanica. http: //www.mossandmezcal.com / herbs - of - gaudalupe. html
8. Isaiah 11;1-2
9. Isaiah 7;14 / Luke 1;36-48 /Revelation 12;1-17 / Song of Solomon 6;10
10. Genesis 3;15
11. Hardin, Kiva Rose. Our Lady of Guadalupe: Medicine Woman of the Americas. Moss & Mezcal Botanica. http: // www.mossandmezcal.com / herbs - of - gaudalupe. html
12. John 3;14
13. Michael. October-November-December 2002 issue. The Apparition of Our Lady of Guadalupe in 1531.
www. mirchaeljournal. org / guadalupe .htm
14. Lynch, Dan. 2002. The Amazing Truth of Our Lady of Guadalupe. www. catholiceducation . org /en / culture / catholic- contributions / the- amazing - truth - of - our - lady - of - guadalupe . html
15. Our Lady of the Rosary Library. Our Lady of Guadalupe. https : // www. olrl. org / prophecy / ladyofg. shtml
16. Zenit. 2001. Science sees what Mary saw from Juan Diegos tilma. www. catholiceducation. org / en / culture / catholic-contributions / science - sees- what - mary - saw - from - juan - diegos - tilma .html
Use freely for any worthy purpose
Use freely for any worthy purpose