"Normal" birth of Jesus

Question from Val O'Regan on 1/14/2008:

Method of Jesus' birth Question from on 12-26-2007: Was Jesus born vaginally? or Did he just appear? Answer by Fr. Jay Toborowsky on 01-14-2008: Though I wasn't there, Jesus' birth was through the normal means, meaning, yes, vaginally.

Father Toborowsky, I believe you have misled the questioner and other readers with this answer.

The Catechism of the Council of Trent says: "He is born of his Mother without any diminution of her maternal virginity ... Just as the rays of the sun penetrate without breaking or injuring in the least the solid substance of glass, so after a like but more exalted manner did Jesus Christ come forth from His Mother's womb without injury to her maternal virginity ... To Eve it was said: 'In sorrow thou shalt bring forth children.' Mary was exempt from this law, for preserving her virginal integrity inviolate she brought forth Jesus, the Son of God, without experiencing ... any sense of pain."

In his encyclical Mystici Corporis, Pope Pius XII expressly affirms the miraculous nature of the birth: "It was she who gave miraculous birth to Christ Our Lord."

The New Catholic Encyclopedia states: "The perpetual virginity of the Blessed Virgin Mary is a dogma of the Catholic Church. Three points are included in the dogma: the virginal conception of Jesus by Mary without any human father, the virginal birth of the Child from the womb of His Mother without injury to the bodily integrity of Mary, and Mary's observance of virginity afterwards throughout her earthly life."

And, "The doctrine that Mary remained a virgin in giving birth to Jesus involves the preservation of her bodily integrity intact and her exemption from the ordinary pangs of childbirth."

In your answer you stated that the birth was a "normal" one, but as can be seen from the above quotes, that is not Catholic teaching. It seems to be the view of modernists who want to emphasise the human element and de-emphasise the miraculous. The suggestion seems to be that a miraculous birth is in some way incongruous or even incompatible with Our Lord's humanity. But if a miraculous conception is acceptable, why not a miraculous birth?

Through many centuries Catholics, and other Christians, have believed that Our Lady gave birth miraculously, not "normally". I hope you will acknowledge what is really Catholic teaching on this matter.

Answer by Fr. Jay Toborowsky on 1/16/2008:

Dear Val,

First of all, this is a question and answer forum and not a discussion forum. The question was whether Jesus was born through the natural means, or whether he just "appeared". Faced with that choice, I responded that he was born the natural way, as each of us were born. Now, does that diminish the miracle of Mary's virginity continuing after Jesus' birth? No, that's a whole other question. The question was about Jesus' birth, and not Mary's perpetual virginity.

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