Indian Cardinal Telesphore Toppo says that proclaiming Mary as "spiritual mother of all humanity" and "co-redemptrix with Jesus the redeemer" would aid not hinder inter-religious dialogue.
According to Cardinal Toppo, such a declaration would help non-Catholics to understand many things about the Mother of God, Zenit reports.The archbishop of Ranchi and former president of the episcopal conference of India is one of the five cardinal co-sponsors of the 2005 International Symposium on Marian Co-redemption, held in Fatima, who are asking Benedict XVI to declare a fifth Marian dogma.
The petition urges the Pope to proclaim Mary "the Spiritual Mother of All Humanity, the co-redemptrix with Jesus the redeemer, mediatrix of all graces with Jesus the one mediator, and advocate with Jesus Christ on behalf of the human race."
Cardinal Toppo told Zenit that enthusiastic letters of support for this dogma were received from cardinals and bishops from all five continents.
"Many of the letters spoke of the need for the dogma and Our Lady's greatest possible intercession for the troubled situation for the world today, including the rampant war and terrorism, religious persecution, moral depravity, family breakdown and even natural disasters," Cardinal Toppo said.
"The general consensus of the letters from my brother cardinals and bishops is that now is the time for this fifth Marian dogma as a remedy for the unique difficulties facing the world," he continued.
"As she did in the Upper Room and in the early Church, Our Lady can intercede like no one else for a new release of the Holy Spirit to bring new grace, peace and protection for the Church and for the world.
"In inter-religious dialogue, it is of the utmost importance that both sides come to know each other's faith position as accurately as possible," Cardinal Toppo told Zenit.
"Now it is my contention that a Catholic's presentation and explanation of Mary's title as co-redemptrix would greatly help his or her dialogue partner to understand correctly some basics of the Church's teaching.
"The title co-redemptrix would naturally provide the occasion to present our doctrine concerning the redeemer and the mystery of redemption, the primacy of God's initiative, and the absolutely uncontestable role of the uniqueness of Jesus as the divine redeemer," he said.
However, this truth concerning Redemption is to be "complemented with the indispensable need for the cooperation of the human beneficiary"."Humans can sin by themselves, but they cannot save by themselves," he said.
"In other words, cooperation is required, for each one according to the freely designed and chosen plan of God.
"Mary's cooperation helps all Christians and even non-Christians to understand our own required cooperation with Jesus and with his grace for our salvation.
"I have no doubt that non-Catholic Christians participating in ecumenical dialogue, either will find this position acceptable or at least will have no valid or convincing argument against it."A presentation of Mary as co-redemptrix would be especially appreciated in dialogue with Muslims, for the simple reason that Mary is already well known to them from the Quran itself. "Muslims revere Mary as the 'greatest of women', sinless and ever virgin. She is a woman of great dignity and her role and significance is acknowledged in the Quran, in the Hadith and in the piety of daily Muslim life," Cardinal Toppo concluded.
Cardinal Toppo on a proposed Marian dogma (Zenit, 6/5/08)
Mary Co-Redemptrix explained (Catholic Source)
Cardinal Telesphore Toppo (Wikipedia)