The Mother Of Christ by Father Vassall-Phillips Part 175.

It is sometimes said by the enemies of our religion that educated Catholics may escape the danger of idolatry in this matter, but that uneducated Catholics—for example, those who are unable to read Uneducated or write—are sure to fall into idolatry and perish. If you ask why "uneducated" Catholics should be specially liable to mistake the creature for the Creator, you will get no answer to your question. For my part, I have had in my life to do with many uneducated Catholics in various parts of the world— I have watched closely and had converse with white men of various nationalities, with black men and with yellow—numbers of them quite ignorant of letters and hopelessly incapable of learning—but I have never known a Catholic who was in any danger of honouring our Lady too much, or could have done so if he had tried, any more than I could myself. The thing is absolutely impossible so long as the elementary teaching of the Catechism is remembered. There is but one God, the Maker of Heaven and earth and of all that they contain, and consequently of Mary. He is also her Redeemer, and to Him alone she owes her sanctification. If anyone denies these elementary truths, or any one of them, that man may easily honour the creature unduly, but then he will already have ceased to be a Catholic. The external honour that very humble and, it may be, very ignorant Catholics—too simple to care for human respect—may be seen to show, in their great devotion, to Mary's images will certainly deepen their adoration of Mary's Lord, who raised her to such an intimate relation with Himself. For a stranger to the inwardness of our religion to judge by external appearances—to judge Catholics as if they were Protestants, too often without any definite Faith—is to fall at once into a snare, and inevitably to form an incorrect judgment. The Protestant stranger will judge the religious acts of the Catholic as he would judge those acts in himself were he to indulge in them without the Faith that animates them and from which they spring. This is surely the direct path to delusion. Catholics, poor as well as rich, honour the holy Virgin because God has done so much for her; because He is infinite in His attributes, and yet has united her so ineffably to Himself; because He has made her immaculate in her conception and virgin in her motherhood; be cause He has exalted her to His side; because He delights to listen to her prayers, and has made her so tender and loving that she might care for the members of His Body in their weakness, as once she cared for Himself in Bethlehem and at Nazareth. In a word, the honour rendered to our Lady is the out come of the Catholic Faith. Without a knowledge of that Faith in all its fullness and harmony—without a certain measure of sympathy for Catholicism—it is generally found to be impossible in practice to judge Catholics fairly or to understand their religion at all.