Athanasius on Mary as Ark

“O noble Virgin, truly you are greater than any other greatness. For who is your equal in greatness, O dwelling place of God the Word? To whom among all creatures shall I compare you, O Virgin? You are greater than them all O [Ark of the] Covenant, clothed with purity instead of gold! You are the ark in which is found the golden vessel containing the true manna, that is, the flesh in which divinity resides” (Homily of the Papyrus of Turin).

Mary is continually the dwelling place of the Word, for He experiences all things as present. Time is always now to God, so he experiences like the cross the womb as eternal present. He has never essentially left her womb, but ever remains within her holy dwelling. She is ever continually providing us the true bread which is come from heaven.

Holy Mary outstrips even the angels and stands above them, radiating the awesome power of holiness. The mother of God is our blessed life, and the One who leads us in and with the Spirit to Christ. The Spirit on the one hand and the Mother of God on the other ever point to the Son of God as the One by whom men shall be saved.

To appraise the necessity of Mary, and to give her due veneration is not idolatry, but a proper recognition of the significance of the Mother of God in our devotion to Christ Himself. She is the Ark who ever bears the presence, and the Fathers who died for Christ, died also to protect the integrity of his mother in our devotion. For more on Mary as Ark of the New Covenant, click the picture.

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2 thoughts on “Athanasius on Mary as Ark

  1. Scott Hahn’s Hail Holy Queen does a fantastic job of submitting the Scriptural support for Mary as the New Ark of the Covenant. I think there were three things that sealed it for me:

    (1) The OT Ark having Aaron’s Rod, the Ten Commandments, and Manna inside verus Mother Mary have Christ inside: his priesthood, his kingship, and the Bread of LIfe.

    (2) The amazing Scriptural allusions from when Mary and Elizabeth meet and when David meets the Ark of the Covenant in the OT.

    (3) Revelations 12 is the pinnacle, John describes her not only as an Ark, but also as the New Eve and Queen. Beautiful.

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