In the world of economics there is a theory called zero sum economics. This theory is mainly practiced in the Congress by liberals and it holds that there is an x amount of money available and if someone earns a dollar than someone out there is losing a dollar. This theory sounds correct only at a casual glance, yet when you compare it to economic realities you see that it is woefully short in explaining the truth of economic translations.
I sometimes run into comments or posts where a person asserts some kind of Zero Sum Christianity. That if you pray to Mary and/or the Saints that you are taking away from Jesus. Going strait to Jesus is often the term used and the verse from 1st Timothy 2:5 “For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus,” is normally used to defend this position. This theory also at casual glance appears to be correct, but if you look just a few verses before to 1st Timothy 2:1 “First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all men,” you find that we are asked to pray for others. Does this contradict the unique mediatorship of Christ? No, since our own mediations can happen only because of Christ. As parts of the Mystical Body all of us including those who have died and are in Purgatory or enjoy the Beatific Vision pray with our final end in Christ. Of ourselves our prayers would avail nothing. Jesus also said “God said to him, `I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob’? He is not God of the dead, but of the living; you are quite wrong.” Even those who have died are living and part of the economy of grace.
I also find the idea that praying to Mary will detract from worship of God is something that does not match reality. Is someone really going to assert that the Marian devotion of St. Francis, St. Dominic, St. Thomas Aquinas, St. Therese, etc kept them from being head over heals in love with Christ? If their devotion ended in distraction from Christ, then please heap on me this distraction. At first I also had difficulty with praying to Mary and the Saints. I would pray to Jesus or the Holy Spirit mainly. After I started to know Jesus more I finally decided that I needed to meet some of his “sons by adoption.” Meeting his Mother and other relatives was a boon to my prayer life and not something that hindered it. Seeing Mary I saw what Christ originally intended us to be before Original Sin marred us. Seeing the saints I saw what was possible for all of us who suffer from Original Sin and the concupiscence of flesh. Their merits were totally from grace. If we admire what God has done with one of his creatures we do not take away from the fact that it was God’s grace that did it. Admiring a beautiful painting does not insult it’s creator. I still pray strait to Jesus and knowing what he had done for his family helps me to love him all the more.