Catechism of the Catholic Church

The Profession of Faith 127 501 Jesus is Mary’s only son, but her spiritual motherhood extends to all men whom indeed he came to save: “The Son whom she brought forth is he whom God placed as the first-born among many brethren, that is, the faithful in whose generation and formu­ lation she cooperates with a mother’s love.” 160 Mary’s virginal motherhood in God’s plan 502 The eyes of faith can discover in the context of the whole of Revelation the mysterious reasons why God in his saving plan wanted his Son to be born of a virgin. These reasons touch both on the person of Christ and his redemptive mission, and on the welcome Mary gave that mission on behalf of all men. 503 Mary’s virginity manifests God’s absolute initiative in the Incar­ nation. Jesus has only God as Father. “He was never estranged from the Father because of the human nature which he assumed . . . . He is naturally Son of the Father as to his divinity and naturally son of his mother as to his humanity, but properly Son of the Father in both natures.” 161 504 Jesus is conceived by the Holy Spirit in the Virgin Mary’s womb because he is the NewAdam, who inaugurates the new creation: “The first man was from the earth, a man of dust; the second man is from heaven.” 162 From his conception, Christ’s humanity is filled with the Holy Spirit, for God “gives him the Spirit without measure.” 163 From “his fullness” as the head of redeemed humanity “we have all received, grace upon grace.” 164 505 By his virginal conception, Jesus, the New Adam, ushers in the new birth of children adopted in the Holy Spirit through faith. “How can this be?” 165 Participation in the divine life arises “not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.” 166 The acceptance of this life is virginal because it is entirely the Spirit’s gift to man. The spousal character of the human vocation in relation to God 167 is fulfilled perfectly in Mary’s virginal motherhood. 506 Mary is a virgin because her virginity is the sign of her faith “unadulterated by any doubt,” and of her undivided gift of herself to God’s will. 168 It is her faith that enables her to become the mother of the Savior: 160 LG 63; cf. Jn 19:26-27; Rom 8:29; Rev 12:17. 161 Council of Friuli (796): DS 619; cf. Lk 2:48-49. 162 1 Cor 15:45, 47. 163 Jn 3:34. 164 Jn 1:16; cf. Col 1:18. 165 Lk 1:34; cf. Jn 3:9. 166 Jn 1:13. 167 Cf. 2 Cor 11:2. 168 LG 63; cf. 1 Cor 7:34-35. 969 970 90 422 359 1265 148 1814