Wednesday, September 18, 2013

PV of the BVM

For those with access to theological libraries, or who can get the document through the Theological Research Exchange Network, the thesis that I found was by William Essey and is dated March 1973. The title is “Mariology in the Fathers: Apostolic Era through Byzantine Synthesis”. In the paper the author notes the influence of the Protoevangelium of James on the theology of St Clement of Alexandria (ca. 215) who then influenced Origen (c. 253). Here’s the relevant quote from the thesis:
Although not playing so great a role in the Mariology of the first three centuries, the “Protoevangelium of James” was known by some Fathers and planted the seeds which would bear fruit in a few generations. (p 10)
 He then proceeds to list the things that are found in “the apocryphal text” including “references to her [Mary's] ever-virginity”. Thus, my central thesis, that the source of the dogma of the Perpetual Virginity of Mary rests upon the Protoevangelium of James finds support in the scholarly writings of St. Vlad’s Seminary. In fact, I did a search of the thesis on file at the library and could find none that support a contrary position. However, there may be some that are not on file at the theological library.