Gate of Heaven is another one of Mary’s traditional titles. This doesn’t mean, however, that she’s decoupaged on St. Peter’s Pearly Portal. Instead, the title refers to Mary’s role as a way through which we can enter into a relationship with her Son.

Protestants and Catholics often disagree on this point. Protestants, arguing that we can go directly to God, claim there’s no need to go through Mary. This is, of course, absolutely true. However, a story told by St. Louis de Montfort helps to clarify Mary’s role in Catholic teaching. St. Louis tells of a poor farmer who had only a worm-riddled apple to present to the king. The farmer knew the apple was imperfect, unfit for royalty. The farmer took the apple to the queen, who was his friend, and asked her to give it to the king. The queen, out of love for the farmer, cut the bad spots out of the apple, put it on a golden serving dish, and surrounded it with flowers. The king, seeing the apple in such a lovely setting, was delighted to accept it as full payment for the farm.

In similar fashion, we can take our desires and needs; however, tarnished they may be to Mary, asking her to present them to her Son on our behalf. Just as the king wouldn’t reject the apple from his queen, so too Jesus won’t turn away our requests when they’re presented by Mary.

Can we go directly to God with our requests? Of course. Do we always have to? Not as long as we have Mary as our friend.

If I could be granted one request, what would it be? Have I asked Mary to take my request to God on my behalf?

365 Mary: A Daily Guide to Mary’s Wisdom and Comfort – Woodeene Koenig-Bricker

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