The Queenship of Mary or Mary Queen of Heaven is a title given by the Catholic Church to the Virgin Mary, the traditional mother of Jesus. The Feast is on August 22.
Mary Queen of Heaven is based on Queen Mother Traditions
It is based on the idea that Mary is the mother of Jesus Christ, the king of heaven.
Jewish traditions honor the mother of the king. So does the English Queen Mother tradition, which honors the widowed mother of the king.
Coronation of the Virgin
The Feast of Mary Queen of Heaven follows the Assumption of Mary which commemorates her earthly death / heavenly birth on August 15. In heaven she was crowned Queen of Heaven on August 22.
Independently of the Church, the coronation of the virgin has a long tradition in art. It was a popular subject in Renaissance Italy.
The Church celebrations are recent practices. They were only established in the 1950s by Pope Pius XII as the 1954 centennial of the church’s adoption of the Immaculate Conception (the divinity of women) approached.
One of the interesting aspects of Marion veneration is that the traditions were established by the people, and the Church responded.
Religious practice is not meant to be read literally. It is poetic metaphor. Religious stories are like zen stories meant to stimulate thought and interpretation in concert with your own experience of life.
Honoring the female aspect of divinity makes a lot of sense. When you are hurt, who do you turn to? You turn to the caring love of your mother. And in the family, always the core structure of Latin life, mother is queen.
One of the central ideas of Christianity is rebirth in an afterlife. Recognizing Mary as the Queen of Heaven offers the hope of reconnecting with the mother aspect after death. What a soothing thought.
Mary Queen of Heaven in New York City
There is a Mary Queen of Heaven Church in Flatlands, Brooklyn.
Diego Velázquez (1599-1660) was the court painter of King Philip IV during the Spanish Golden Age (1492-1681). He wasn’t well known in his day, but his portraiture was influential to generations of Spanish artists that followed including realists, impressionists and surrealists in the 19th and 20th centuries.