Book Review: Hail, Holy Queen

Hail, Holy Queen:  The Mother Of God In The Word Of God, by Scott Hahn

Like the writing of this author in general [1], this is a book that is written for an internal Catholic audience about matters that are highly dubious at best to non-Catholic audiences with a low view of worshipping in the manner of the Babylonian mystery religion [2].  Reading this book is like watching the contemporary equivalent of the writings of a devotee of Isis or some other ancient version of the supposed “Queen of Heaven” (see Jeremiah 7:18, 44:17-25) write about the mothering of God and other things.  This author’s approach is almost admirable in the way that he simply lets his Marian views fly without considering how embarrassing they are to others.  Admittedly, I am not the target audience of this work, as the vast majority of the author’s approach is in appealing to traditions and authorities that have zero appeal for me personally and in making even more than usual logical fallacies which I will discuss later in some detail.  Even so, those reading this book from the outside have a perspective on this that I think is often missed, and a reminder that our books to insiders are likely as amusing and puzzling to those who are outsiders to our own background and unfamiliar with or unpersuaded by those authorities we most value.

This book is introduced by an author and priest that the author of this book met at a particularly low point in his Marian evangelism (an entertaining story that one can read towards the end of this book) and consists of eight chapters and an appendix that cover about 175 pages of material.  The author begins with a discussion of his own path to Marian regard and his own relationship with his mother, which appear to be related in this book (Intro).  After that the author discusses Mary as the author’s type of mother (1) as well as the connection between Mary and Eve that the author draws upon often in writing this book and other books of his (2).  The author follows this with another conflation between Mary and the heavenly Ark of the Covenant that John sees in Revelation (3) and also gives a nonbiblical and vaguely troubling discussion of Mary as a form of Queen Mother as a power by the throne, something that did not work well in ancient Israel (see, for example, 1 Kings 15:13) (4).  The author then gives a fallacious look at biblical typology relating to Mary (5) and a discussion of the Trinity and Family that conflates those two views of God (6) before closing with a discussion of Mary and the Church (7), an unapologetic postscript giving caution to would-be Catholic apologists (8), and a discussion about rosary beads (9).

There is a lot to find fault with in this book for those who come from this book as non-Catholics.  For one, this author has a total inability to focus on the Word of God as his subtitle (falsely) promises, continually bringing in material from Popes and Cardinals and other Catholic (non-)authorities as well as citations from the Jewish apocrypha.  Even when the author does talk about scripture, he makes all kinds of logical errors like non-sequitur in assuming that an eternal Father-Son relationship in the Godhead implies a Trinity (2 does not imply 3), as well as conflatio in relating all of the meanings of the Church as well as Eve and the non-biblical ideas of the Queen of Heaven into Mary.  The author repeatedly demonstrates an inability to stay within the confines of scripture or to properly move from point A to point B or from a point and its support, and one secretly wonders if his conversion from Calvinism to Catholicism was in order to set himself free from the burden of having to limit his argumentation to either sound reasoning or sound scriptural exegesis, neither of which is the author’s strong point.  Caveat lector.

[1] See, for example:

[2] See, for example:

About nathanalbright

I'm a person with diverse interests who loves to read. If you want to know something about me, just ask.
This entry was posted in Bible, Biblical History, Book Reviews, Christianity, History and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Book Review: Hail, Holy Queen

  1. Pingback: Book Review: Swear To God | Edge Induced Cohesion

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