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149 Throughout her life and until her last ordeal 15 when Jesus her son died on the cross, Mary's faith never wavered. She never ceased to believe in the fulfilment of God's word. And so the Church venerates in Mary the purest realization of faith.

Part 1, Section 2, Chapter 2, Article 4, Paragraph 1

575 Many of Jesus' deeds and words constituted a "sign of contradiction", 321 but more so for the religious authorities in Jerusalem, whom the Gospel according to John often calls simply "the Jews", 322 than for the ordinary People of God. 323 To be sure, Christ's relations with the Pharisees were not exclusively polemical. Some Pharisees warn him of the danger he was courting; 324 Jesus praises some of them, like the scribe of Mark 12:34, and dines several times at their homes. 325 Jesus endorses some of the teachings imparted by this religious elite of God's people: the resurrection of the dead, 326 certain forms of piety (almsgiving, fasting and prayer), 327 the custom of addressing God as Father, and the centrality of the commandment to love God and neighbour. 328

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587 If the Law and the Jerusalem Temple could be occasions of opposition to Jesus by Israel's religious authorities, his role in the redemption of sins, the divine work par excellence, was the true stumbling-block for them. 363

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618 The cross is the unique sacrifice of Christ, the "one mediator between God and men". 452 But because in his incarnate divine person he has in some way united himself to every man, "the possibility of being made partners, in a way known to God, in the paschal mystery" is offered to all men. 453 He calls his disciples to "take up [their] cross and follow [him]", 454 for "Christ also suffered for [us], leaving [us] an example so that [we] should follow in his steps." 455 In fact Jesus desires to associate with his redeeming sacrifice those who were to be its first beneficiaries. 456 This is achieved supremely in the case of his mother, who was associated more intimately than any other person in the mystery of his redemptive suffering. 457

Apart from the cross there is no other ladder by which we may get to heaven. 458

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