All of the popes of the 20th century proclaimed something wonderful about Mary. Pope Paul VI declared her the Mother of the Church. Just as mothers give birth, nourish, and educate their children, so does Mary guide our spiritual birth and development. She unceasingly prays to Jesus on our behalf and provides us with an example of how to live a holy life.
Mary's holiness was the result not only of a special gift from God but also of her continuous and generous cooperation with the action of the Holy Spirit. We contemplate Mary admiringly, Pope Paul VI said, because she was “firm in her faith, ready in her obedience, simple in humility, exulting in praising the Lord, ardent in charity, strong and constant in the fulfillment of her mission.” (“Signum Magnum: Letter on the Blessed Virgin Mary,” May 13, 1967)