"It may be objected: 'Our Lord is enough for me. I have no need of her.' But He needed her, whether we do or not. God, Who made the sun, also made the moon. The moon does not take away from the brilliance of the sun. All its light is reflected from the sun. The Blessed Mother reflects her Divine Son; without Him, she is nothing. With Him, she is the Mother of Men."
--Bishop Fulton Sheen
Here is a basic outline of the Catholic beliefs about Mary:
1.Mary, like every other person on earth, was saved by the sacrifice of her Son, Jesus Christ.
2. Mary is the Theotokos--the "God bearer." If you actually believe in Jesus as God the Son, why would you object to this? That is what we mean when we say the smoother phrase in English--"Mother of God."
Jesus is God.
Mary is His Mother.
Mary is the Mother of God.
It really is that simple.
3. Mary, through a special grace given her by God as the Theotokos, was sinless all her life.
4. Mary, also through special grace, was a virgin her whole life.
5. Mary was her Son's first disciple.
6. Mary is the Mother of the Church. She is Jesus' Mother. We are called the Body of Christ. She is our mother.
7. Mary was assumed, that is taken up into heaven, body and soul by God. We know that Enoch (Genesis 5:24 & Sirach 49:14) and Elijah (2 Kings 2:1-12) were assumed into heaven. The Church has sacred Tradition that says Mary was assumed bodily, but she also sees the result of Mary's assumption in Revelation 12:1.
8. Mary was crowned Queen (Mother) of Heaven.
What the Catholic Church does NOT believe about Mary:
1. She is a goddess. (She is not worshipped by Catholics. Honor and worship of God are two separate things).
2. She is equal to Jesus, and therefore is part of the Trinity or quadinity (Yes, some ignorant protestants really believe that we believe that.)
3. She was perfect. (Sinless and perfect are not the same).
Some object to Catholics praying TO Mary. First off, we only pray (old fashioned word for asking--"Pray tell, what time is it?"--English is a very imprecise language) to her to ask for her to pray to us. She obtains things for us from God by asking, not by any power she has independent of God. Since she's right there next to Jesus, her Son, don't you think that her prayer would be heard? Yes, we can and do pray to Jesus directly all the time.
Second, my God is the God of the Living not the dead. (Mark 12:27) All our "friends", for that is what saints are, are enjoying the heavenly vision. That is the Christian hope, is it not, to be with Jesus eternally alive in Heaven? So, why would anyone begrudge Mary that privilege also? That is one thing I cannot fathom. That Mary is in Heaven, no one calling themselves Christian can or should doubt. I understand why they would not believe she cares for them, but I, personally, find that a little sad. I need all the hope I can get.
I'll stop there for now. Mary is under attack there will be more to come.