A Beautiful Moment of Marian Hyperdulia
Dearest friends, this Marian feast celebrated in Spain, captures a beautiful moment of an organised honour paid to the Blessed Virgin Mary. One may wonder the level of attention and plan given to this occasion and so on and so forth. It is, however, worthwhile to understand that the Catholic Church is so organised to the point that it permeates even her worship, administration, activities, and teachings. By way of her worship and teachings, we must understand and distinguish the following:
Latria, derived from the Greek word for worship and obeisance paid to the highest authority, depicts a central and undivided worship given only and solely to God in the Blessed Trinity(Father, Son, and Holy Spirit). Here, the faithful, in truth, gesture, faith conviction, and heartfelt expression, gives a complete worship of adoration to the Triune God, recognising that He alone is sovereign above all other forces, principalities, authorities, and recognitions. Latria can be shown in prayer (to and through), kneeling, worship bowing, utmost belief, faith, and trust in. Most importantly, recognising IN HEART, SOUL, SPIRIT AND MIND, that the Triune God is the GREATEST AND SUPREME POWER over all. This ecclesial and personal recognition concretized in PRACTICAL LOVE OF GOD AND WORSHIP OF HIM goes beyond every other definition and expression of doubts.
The Greek word “dulia” expresses devotion and veneration. With the combination of “huper” it goes deeper into a “substantial” and deep-rooted devotion towards something that has a deeper, original, and ontological connection with the true essence of worship itself. In the context of worship, the only figure that describes this identity amongst “sainthood and the saints” is the BLESSED VIRGIN MARY, who not only enjoys the dulia honour of the Saints, but also a “hyperdulic” connection with God from the beginning of human history and in human participation in the divine and in the “Latrian” worship to God. Mary first gave the true objective Latria to God, and not only being saintly, she draws sainthood to us. Hence, in an essential difference but with a remark of inclusion, Mary receives an honour we only share in; an honour the Triune God himself, first of all, gave her and called her “BLESSED”(Saintly). Cf Luke1:26-38. By participating in the divine life through a bio-spiritual import, unlike our sharing through a redemptive and adoptive scheme, Mary is, therefore, revered and honoured as a “catabatic and anabatic” model.
Hyperdulia can be shown in prayer (through), kneeling to God (in whose honour to the Blessed Virgin Mary(or Saints) we join and to whom, with and through the Blessed Virgin Mary, we return all glory and worship to), kissing, meditation (through), place and self adornment (with), and MOST IMPORTANTLY, recognising in heart and mind the place of Mary in human economy of salvation and in the proper distinctive honour due to her outside of the worship of the Triune God.
In addition, the above HYPERDULIA expression can also be paid to God, but not excluding the Latria proper to God.
From the above, it may seem unnecessary to further clarification on Dulia. However, having shown its expression above from the Greek origin, it is worthy of note here that aside the “Cult of Latria” the hyperdulia and dulia belong to the “Cult of Dulia” with significant distinctions as expressed above.
Dulia is a heartfelt spiritual and devotional honour paid to the Saints for their heroic virtues and life here on earth, as well as walking in close assimilation and imitation of their lives and virtues. In this Cult of dulia, the saints, whom God honoured by way of their life and final perseverance, are seen as vessels through which God consoles, encourages and gives hope to humanity, and through which humanity is drawn to the life of the Blessed in contemplation of human final earthly end and eschatological end.
Dulia can be shown in prayer (through; i.e, intercession and with), kissing, adornments, gestures of honour and reverence, and IMPORTANTLY, recognising IN TRUTH, HEART AND MIND, the place of the saints in ecclesial and personal worship. The stated expression of dulia can also be accorded to the Triune God and Mary, but not in exclusion of the proper Worship and honour due to them as stated above.
IT MUST HOWEVER, BE VEHEMENTLY AVOWED HERE, THAT THE CASE OR QUESTION OF IGNORANCE OR PERSONAL PIETY DOES NOT AND CANNOT DEFINE OR DEFILE THE AUTHENTIC TEACHINGS OR PRACTICES OF THE CHURCH IN ITS ENTIRETY.
WITH OR WITHOUT IMAGES, THESE WORSHIP AND HONOUR REMAIN; NEVER ADDED TO NOR REMOVED FROM!
GLORY AND WORSHIP TO GOD;
HONOUR AND DEVOTION TO MARY AND THE SAINTS!