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Dear Catholic.com visitor: Summer is here, and you may be thinking about a well-deserved vacation, family get-togethers, BBQs with neighborhood friends. More than likely, making a donation to Catholic Answers is not on your radar right now. But this is exactly the time we most need your help. The “summer slowdown” in donations is upon us, but the work of spreading the gospel and explaining and defending the Faith never takes a break. Your gift today will change lives and save souls for Christ this summer! The reward is eternal. Thank you and God bless.

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Does the Pagan Goddess Ishtar = Mary, Queen of Heaven?

Question:

What is the answer to a friend who says we are worshiping the Babylonian goddess Ishtar when we honor Mary? He uses Jeremiah 44 as proof because we call Mary the Queen of Heaven.

Answer:

The fact that a pagan deity Ishtar was supposedly known as the queen of heaven doesn’t mean this term can’t rightfully be applied, in another sense altogether, to Mary. The pagan king of Babylon, Nebuchadnezzar, is called the king of kings by Daniel (Dn 2:37), yet this doesn’t preclude Jesus from being called by the same title (Rv 17:14; 19:16).

Since the destiny of all Christians is to reign as kings and queens with Christ in heaven (Eph 2:12; Rv 1:6; 5:10), and since Mary is the preeminent Christian, there’s nothing wrong with giving her the title which Christ, the King of Kings, bestowed upon her in making Mary his mother.

You may also want to check out our article, Is ‘Easter’ an English Translation of ‘Ishtar’?

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