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It often becomes awkward when people discover that I teach science.

First, when someone discovers I teach secondary school, they assume, because I’m a writer, that I teach English. Next, when the discover that I’m a science teacher, they tilt their head and say something like, “How can you teach science and be religious?” — as if one excludes they other.

They do not.

Recently, while preparing to teach my AP Biology class, I read a paper on Fetal microchimerism. It’s a phenomenon involving fetal development that has lead to more questions than answers, but it is still fascinating.

Here’s my layperson interpretation: Though we know that blood cells of the mother and the fetus do not cross the placenta, stem cells of the fetus do. These stem cells can last, circulating in the mother’s system, for almost four decades.

Even more interesting, these stem cells can cross back across the placenta into a future child. So, simply put, unless you are the first born in your family, you have stem cells of your older siblings inside of you.

Wow! Being the youngest Dobkowski, I have my siblings cells inside of me. That’s cool and creepy, at the same time.

Then, suddenly it hit me: That means Jesus’ stem cells crossed over into his mother, Mary.

As a Catholic Christian, I am familiar with some of the Marian traditions passed down through the centuries, such as: The Immaculate Conception, The Assumption of Mary/ Dormition of the Mother of God, Mary’s Perpetual Virginity….

A quick side note: Though many mistakenly believe an immaculate conception is when a virgin conceives a child with a deity minus the act intercourse, well … it’s not. In truth, the Immaculate Conception is a person, the Virgin Mary, who was conceived naturally — just like everybody else — except she was conceived minus the stain of mortal sin.

Many of my non-Catholic Christians have a problem with this Church Teaching.

However, the recent scientific discovery of fetal microchimerism not only scientifically supports the doctrine of this teaching, but it supports the ideology of the Dormition and Mary’s Perpetual Virginity, as well.

If your a non-Catholic Christian, you’ve might’ve heard the phrase, “God cannot be in the presence of sin.” Well, there are many Biblical examples as to why this phrase in technically untrue. However, this saying becomes clearer when shared in the light of Isaiah 59:2.

But your iniquities have separated you from your God….

How could the Mother of God be separate from God who she is carrying God in her womb, if the woman and her womb were not a fitting vessel — meaning without sin?

Using science, anyone could argue against the Immaculate Conception with a strong scientific defense since Embryology soundly shows that a fetus’s blood and the blood of the mother don’t ever mix, thereby  making her womb a fitting vessel regardless of Mary’s sinful nature; and they would be right — before the 1990’s.

But since the 1990’s, we know, scientifically speaking, that the infant stem cells cross the placenta and enter into body of his/her mother. That would mean the cells which were genetically Christ and incarnately God would have entered into His Mother.

That could not occur if her iniquities have separated her from God.

So, therefore, the Virgin Mary’s entire nature to be sinless — or as we Catholic Christians say “Immaculate” or “Full of Grace.”

The scientific discovery of Fetal microchimerism also confirms, for me, the need for Mary’s Immaculate Conception.

Think about it…

 

Even more astounding, a report in Molecular Human Reproduction shows that researchers, who performed autopsies on 26 women who died while pregnant or within 1 month after delivery of a son, found Y-chromosome cells in every tissue cells of the host mother.

Every cell!

That means that Mary body was literally embedded with Christ’s cells!  Since Mary, biologically consubstantial with Our Lord, was also rightfully taken up to Heaven in her Assumption.

The science clearly supports that ideology, also!

Now finally, let’s discuss how fetal microchimerism also further confirms the Church teaching of Mary’s perpetual virginity.

I know this is a hot-bed of contention because the Bible clearly states the James from Jesus’ brother and our Lord had siblings. Or does it.

Regarding the common argument from Matthew 1.24-25 that Christ had siblings, the famous Reformer, John Calvin thought “that no just and well-grounded inference can be drawn from these words of the Evangelist, as to what took place after the birth of Christ”

Calvin was not alone among the Protestant Reformers in defending the perpetual virginity of our Blessed Mother.

known to have been the practice of the inspired writers.”

Calvin was not alone among the Protestant Reformers in defending the perpetual virginity of our Blessed Mother.

Martin Luther wrote:

“When Matthew says that Joseph did not know Mary carnally until she had brought forth her son, it does not follow that he knew her subsequently; on the contrary, it means that he never did know her . . . This babble . . . is without justification . . . he has neither noticed nor paid any attention to either Scripture or the common idiom.” (That Jesus was Born a Jew)

“Christ, our Savior, was the real and natural fruit of Mary’s virginal womb . . . This was without the cooperation of a man, and she remained a virgin after that. […] Christ . . . was the only Son of Mary, and the Virgin Mary bore no children besides Him . . . I am inclined to agree with those who declare that ‘brothers’ really mean ‘cousins’ here, for Holy Writ and the Jews always call cousins brothers.” (Sermons on John)

Huldrych Zwingli wrote:

“I firmly believe that Mary, according to the words of the gospel as a pure Virgin brought forth for us the Son of God and in childbirth and after childbirth forever remained a pure, intact Virgin.” (Zwingli Opera, Corpus Reformatorum, Berlin, 1905, v. 1, p. 424)

Even John Wesley, in 1749, wrote:

“I believe that He [Jesus] was made man, joining the human nature with the divine in one person; being conceived by the singular operation of the Holy Ghost, and born of the blessed Virgin Mary, who, as well after as before she brought Him forth, continued a pure and unspotted virgin.” (Letter to a Roman Catholic)

If Jesus was not an only child, he, a devout Jew, not only broke Jewish Law by handing his mother over to John while they looked up at Him from the foot of the Cross, but He also would’ve natural law was broken, as well.

Let me explain — using science.

As stated above, these fetal stem cells don’t just cross over and dwell inside of Mom as the nourished baby develops and grows, but they also return to the womb and nest inside future siblings.

And since God cannot be in the presence of sin, Jesus’ stem cell cannot be in His brothers and sisters, who had not yet been saved by Christ’s Death and Resurrection.

Remember, the Resurrection has not yet occurred, and the Holy Spirit — which dwells in us — was not yet given to us.

Now, if you’re Catholic, I know what you’re thinking: What about Holy Communion? Doesn’t Christ enter our body when we receive his Body and Blood.

Theologically, no!

When we go partake in Holy Communion, we enter into the Body of Christ which is why we are not suppose to receive Eucharist with the knowledge of committing the mortal sin. That’s what St. Paul meant when he wrote, “Whoever, therefore, eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of profaning the body and blood of the Lord” (1 Cor 11-27).

Yes, God is omnipresent. And yes, He has been in the presence of Satan (see the Book of Job). And yes again, upon His death, Jesus descended in Hell (though many argue he descended only to Abraham’s Bosoom or Paradise, as He called it on the Cross,  and into the bowels of Hell (Gehenna).)

But God could never be encapsulated in a vessel of sin and become co-joined with darkness.  For God separates Himself from sin, and the Light of the World can never dwell in Darkness.

The science is clear, and because it’s clear, my Faith is sealed.

But let’s go beyond the science for a moment.  The answers to all our questions about Mary can be found in the Heart of Christ.

If you were God and you could create your own mother, how would you do it?

My guess would be “Perfect” — just like the first woman I created, who was designed to dwell with me forever and without sin.

 

 

James DobkowskiJames Henry is the author of Corporation YOU: A Business Plan for the Soul, ‘Twas, and the new book series Hail Mary. For six years, James taught At-Risk kids in Los Angeles. Today, he lives in New York where he continues to write — and teach. To contact James or book an interview, please contact Mark of Goldman & McCormick PR at (516) 639-0988 or Mark@goldmanmccormick.com.

 

FIGURE SOURCE:

Boddy, A. M., Fortunato, A., Wilson Sayres, M. and Aktipis, A. (2015), Fetal microchimerism and maternal health: A review and evolutionary analysis of cooperation and conflict beyond the womb. BioEssays, 37: 1106–1118. doi:10.1002/bies.201500059

http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/bies.201500059/full

 

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As a Catholic Christian, I am familiar with some of the Marian traditions passed down through the centuries, such as: The Immaculate Conception, The Assumption of Mary/ Dormition of the Mother of God,  Mary’s Perpetual Virginity….

Many of my non-Catholic Christians have a problem with these Church Teachings.

However, the recent discovery of fetal microchimerism not only scientifically supports the doctrine of the Immaculate Conception teaching, but it supports the ideology of Mary’s Perpetual Virginity and the Assumption, as well.

I’ve already discussed the science behind Mary’s Perpetual Virginity.  So today, on the Feast of the Assumption, let’s now look at the assumption of Mary into Heaven.

According to Catholic beliefs, the Assumption, and also known as Dormition of the Theotokos or the Falling Asleep of the Blessed Virgin Mary in the Eastern Orthodox Church, was the bodily taking up of the Virgin Mary into Heaven at the end of her earthly life.

The Catholic Church teaches as dogma — which means you have to believe — that the Virgin Mary “having completed the course of her earthly life, was assumed body and soul into heavenly glory”.

This doctrine was dogmatically defined by Pope Pius XII on 1 November 1950, in the apostolic constitution Munificentissimus Deus.

Now, it wasn’t until the 1990s, where scientists found the first clues that cells from both sons and daughters can escape from the uterus and spread through a mother’s body. They called the phenomenon fetal microchimerism, the NY Times reports, after the chimera, a monster from Greek mythology that was part lion, goat and dragon. [1]

But fetal cells don’t just drift passively, Carl Zimmer writes in The Times.  Studies of female mice show that fetal cells that end up in their hearts develop into cardiac tissue.

“They’re becoming beating heart cells,” said Dr. J. Lee Nelson, an expert on microchimerism at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle. [2]

A 2015 report in the Oxford University Press Molecular Human Reproduction, a peer-reviewed periodical, shows that researchers, who performed autopsies on 26 women who died while pregnant or within 1 month after delivery of a son, found Y-chromosome cells in every tissue cells of the host mother.

Every cell!

Then, suddenly it hit me: That means that Jesus’ stem cells crossed over into his mother, Mary.

That means that Mary’s body was literally embedded with Christ’s cells!  This scientifically supports the theological case for that the corporeal assumption of Mary.  Since Mary, the Theotokos, was now biologically consubstantial with Our Lord, her body was rightfully taken up to Heaven just as her Son’s Body was taken up to Heaven.

Now I know what you’re thinking.  Didn’t Jesus ever cut His hair or cut His nails?  And what about all the blood that poured from His body during the Passion and the Crucifixion?

I’m sure Christ had his nails and hair cut throughout His 30-plus earthly ministry.

However, these cells are dead — as are the skin cells that fall off our body by the thousands each day.  However, only your follicles carry your DNA.  Hair and nails are keratinized meaning: The parts that you cut off are mostly keratin protein with only fragments of your DNA.  (I guess CSI was wrong all these years!)

In regards to Jesus’ Blood, much of it would’ve been sopped up and laid in the tomb with Him, as was the custom, since Jews believed blood was part of the body. However, to increase their surface area to hold more oxygen, blood cells lose their nuclei and contain no DNA.

The white blood cells, that would exist — much less in number — in the body along side red blood cells, do contain human DNA.  White blood cells, however, can’t divide and do not reproduce on their own.  Instead, WBCs are produced in the bone marrow.  So, WBC would NOT grow in number outside the human host as do stem cells inside the mother who receives these cells by fetal microchimerism. (If it did, your DNA would change every time you received a blood donation.)

Simply put: If Our Lord’s living and reproducing cells dwelled in His Mother’s body, she, like her Son, would have to be lifted into Heaven!

Why?

Because the living cells of The Living God can not return to dust — since Christ, God Incarnate, being the Only-begotten Son, never came from dust!    But don’t take my word on this.

The Apostle, St. Paul, tells us in his First Letter to the Church in Corinth, “The first man Adam became a living being; the last Adam, a life-giving spirit. The spiritual did not come first, but the natural, and after that the spiritual. The first man was of the dust of the earth, the second man from heaven. As was the earthly man, so are those who are of the earth; and as is the man from heaven, so also are those who are of heaven. And just as we have borne the likeness of the earthly man, so shall we bear the likeness of the man from heaven.” (1 Corinthians 15:45-49).

The science is clear, and because it’s clear, my Faith is sealed.

UP NEXT:

Science Behind the Immaculate Conception

ALSO READ

The Science Behind Mary’s Perpetual Virginity

The Theology of Jesus’ Blood Type

 

 

James DobkowskiJames Henry is the author of Corporation YOU: A Business Plan for the Soul, ‘Twas, and the new book series Hail Mary. For six years, James taught At-Risk kids in Los Angeles. Today, he lives in New York where he continues to write — and teach. To contact James or book an interview, please contact Mark of Goldman & McCormick PR at (516) 639-0988 or Mark@goldmanmccormick.com.

 

FIGURE SOURCE:

Boddy, A. M., Fortunato, A., Wilson Sayres, M. and Aktipis, A. (2015), Fetal microchimerism and maternal health: A review and evolutionary analysis of cooperation and conflict beyond the womb. BioEssays, 37: 1106–1118. doi:10.1002/bies.201500059

http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/bies.201500059/full

 

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