Why Mary Is An Example Of Perfect Grace According To St. Thomas

“Hail, full of grace, the Lord is with you. Blessed are you among women. Blessed is the fruit of your womb.” The Church adds the third part, “Mary,” for the angel did not say, “Hail, Mary,” but rather, “Hail, full of grace.” Thus, the Blessed Virgin exceeds the angels, and first of all in the plenitude of grace. To indicate this, the angel offered her reverence, calling her, “full of grace,” as if to say, “This is why I offer you reverence, because you excel me in the fullness of grace.” The grace of God is given, namely, or two purposes: to do good, and to avoid evil. With respect to these two ends, the Blessed Virgin had the most perfect grace, for she avoided sin more perfectly than any other saint outside of Christ. Thus, the Blessed Virgin is more familiar with God than is the angel. For with her is the Lord Father, the Lord Son, and the Lord Holy Spirit, the entire Trinity. Concerning her is sung the verse, “Noble repose of the entire Trinity.” This expression, “The Lord is with you,” is the most noble that can be addressed to anyone. Deservedly, therefore, does the angel revere the Virgin, because she is the mother of the Lord, and hence, Our Lady.

St. Thomas Aquinas
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