Soon-to-be beatified, Fulton Sheen once said, “God does not love us because we are valuable. We are valuable because God loves us.” His wit and wisdom always brings me comfort and keeps my intellect sharp as well. I believe that Sheen’s close relationship with God is a major factor in allowing him to write about the faith in such a way that draws others (like me) deeper to the truth of the gospel.
According to Sheen, “Mary is not our salvation—let us not be absurd on that. The mother is not the doctor, and neither is Mary the Savior. But Mary brings us to the Savior!” (The World’s First Love: Mary, Mother of God, p. 78). We often develop a close relationship to the guide during our travels.
Ultimately, the destination—namely Christ— is to be our primary focus in this life. Nevertheless, it is important to rely on helpmates in the journey towards growing in holiness. Fulton Sheen has been a role model in my life. His writing inspired me to grow in my relationship with the Blessed Virgin, who in turn furthered my worship of God!
Contemplating this, I want to share some inspirational and rich quotes from Sheen’s The World’s First Love: Mary, Mother of God. I hope you find his words both enjoyable to read and insightful to the Catholic faith! Oh, and if you’re interested in more Sheen, check out the book:
“She existed in the Divine Mind as an Eternal Thought before there were any mothers. She is the Mother of mothers—she is the world’s first love.”
“The mark of man is initiative, but the mark of woman is cooperation. Man talks about freedom; woman about sympathy, love, sacrifice. Man cooperates with nature; woman cooperates with God. Man was called to till the earth, to “rule over the earth”; woman to be the bearer of a life that comes from God.”
“The Gospels did not start the Church; the Church started the Gospels. The Church did not come out of the Gospels; the Gospels came out of the Church.”
“As Eden was the Paradise of Creation, Mary is the Paradise of the Incarnation, and in her as a Garden were celebrated the first nuptials of God and man.”
“The love of God is reflected in the soul of the just, as the light of the sun is magnified by a mirror. So Mary’s Son is the Sun; for she is the moon.”
“God, Who made the sun, also made the moon. The moon does not take away from the brilliance of the sun. The moon would be only a burnt-out cinder floating in the immensity of space, were it not for the sun. All its light is reflected from the sun. The Blessed Mother reflects her Divine Son; without Him, she is nothing. With Him, she is the Mother of Men. On dark nights we are grateful for the moon; when we see it shining, we know there must be a sun. So in this dark night of the world when men turn their backs on Him Who is the Light of the World, we look to Mary to guide their feet while we await the sunrise.”