Queen Mother

Adorazione dei Magi, Bartolomé Esteban Murillo (1655)

Every King of Judah has a Queen Mother

King David’s son was King Solomon. When his mother Queen Bathsheba went to King Solomon for a request, the king bowed to her and said he could never turn her away (1 Kings 2:19-20). This began the role of the office of Queen Mother. Every time a king of Judah is mentioned in 1 Kings and 2 Kings, so also is his mother; from Solomon (1 Kings 2) to his son (1 Kings 14:21) to his son and so on; for the kings of Israel, however, no mother is mentioned.1

The reason the mother is mentioned is because of the power of the office of the queen mother. This was clearly demonstrated during the reign of Queen Athaliah (2 Kings 11). When her son, King Ahaziah, was killed, Athaliah usurped the throne and reigned over Judah for seven years. The queen mother accessed the power of the king because of her association with the king.

Jesus Christ is the true King of Judah, so Mary is the true Queen Mother

Christ is the King of Kings and Lord of Lords (Revelations 17:14). When St. Peter delivered his first homily on the day of Pentecost, he said that Christ was the King prophesied by David to take his throne (Acts 2:30).`

If Christ is King in the line of David, then Mary assumes the office of queen mother (St. Athanasius) and became so when she consented to being the Mother of God (St. Bernadine of Siena).1(25)

This is confirmed in the Gospel of St. Matthew. St. Matthew spends the first chapter showing that Christ is the descendant of Abraham and David. When the Magi search for Christ to pay him homage as the true King of the Jews, they find Christ there with His mother (Matthew 2:1-12). The event is recorded much like the record of kings in Kings 1 where the mother of the king is mentioned alongside the king himself.2

It must be noted that Mary is different from every queen mother before her. She, by the grace of God, cannot be deceived like Queen Bathsheba (1 Kings 2:13-18) and is not evil, like Queen Athaliah (2 Kings 11:1-3). This will be detailed more when we talk about her Immaculate Conception. However, like the remaining mothers mentioned alongside the kings of Judah, Mary says very little, avoids attention and directs all honor to her son, the King.