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The Relationship between Mariology and Ecclesiology in the Theological Thinking of John Paul II

Ngah Andrew Kushu-Solii

This work treats of the Phenomenology of Mary and the Church as persons of faith in relation to the Wojtilian phenomenology of the human being as an acting person. According to John Paul II, Mary is an ideal person in/for the Church, and the Church, as a personal communion, has Her as a mirror and concrete evidence of the Church’s call, being and mission. As far as the vocation of the Church is concerned, it will always be far from complete if it is studied, proclaimed or believed in without placing Mary as part of the unavoidable persons and personality in its unfolding. Mary and the Church are related in the mystery of the Church as personal subjects of faith. They owe their being and vocation to the Trinity and have a direct connection with Judaism. Christ is the centre of this relationship and this goes on to highlight ecumenism and also the place of the laity and women in the life of the Church.


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121 CHAPTER THREE - THE MARIOLOGICAL / ECCLESIOLOGICAL THINKING OF JP II 3.1 John Paul II’s Mariological Thought JPII dedicated his pontificate to the maternal care of Mary and since then, he expressed his personal attachment to the Virgin in his practice of linking her to almost all that he wrote as pope. His mariological thoughts can be got from many of his writings, some which we will expose below. 3.1.1 In: ‘Redemptor Hominis’ (RH), March 4, 1979 His first encyclical letter, ‘Redeemer of Man’ (1979), explained the leading theological ideas of his papacy: Christ – the God-man - came to restore human beings to the freedom and dignity of which sin had deprived them. As Christ is the centre of his theology, so Christ's life is the centre of the Christian year, which revolves around Advent-Christmas and Easter-Pentecost. To the mysteries of Christ are added the Marian feasts like the Immaculate Conception, Annunciation and Assumption. To the annual cycle of these feasts corresponds a wider cycle. Right from his first encyclical, JPII began a practice of looking at the ‘how’ and the ‘why’ of the Church through the eyes of Mary. Her motherly vocation gives Mary a unique and unavoidable role in the mystery of the redemption of man in Christ her Son. The ‘mystery of the Mother’ consists in this special role: “The special characteristic of the motherly love that the Mother of God inserts in the mystery of redemption and the life of the Church finds expression in...

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