Gevira, Hebrew: Queen Mother

King Solomon, the son of David who became King of Israel had “seven hundred wives, princesses, and three hundred concubines” 1 Kings 11:3. All those women wanted power in his kingdom, and their advice to him was often more calculated for their advantage than for his. But every man has only one mother he is bound to honor Ex 20:12.

So Solomon established his mother Bathsheba as the gevira, queen mother 1 Kings 2:13.

Abishag the Shunammite was a beautiful young maiden who had served King David in his last years 1 Kings 1:34. Adonijah asked Bathsheba to intercede with King Solomon, “Pray ask King Solomon—he will not refuse you—to give me Abishag the Shunammite as my wife” 1 Kings 2:17. Bathsheba began her request with, “Do not refuse me,” and Solomon replied: “Make your request, my mother; for I will not refuse you” 1 Kings 2:20. The queen mother was always the best intercessor, because her royal son loved her and trusted her. From this arose the Jewish tradition that when a man is suffering and his mother’s name is invoked in prayer, God will be more merciful toward him Ex 20:12.

The objection is sometimes raised that immediately after Bathsheba’s intercession on behalf of Adonijah Solomon ordered him killed. “Adonijah shall be put to death this day” 1 Kings 2:24. But it was not because of Bathsheba’s intercession. Adonijah had tried to usurp the throne 1 Kings 1:5 reserved for Solomon. When Adonijah also tried to get Abishag the Shunammite, King Solomon’s most beautiful wife 1 Kings 1:34, King Solomon finally had enough, and put him to death.

The Blessed Virgin Mary is Rabbi Yeshua’s gevira. She showed her intercessory love in the Wedding Feast at Cana. Ever since she has shown her intercessory love as Queen of HeavenQueen of the Church, and Queen of the Universe, perhaps especially at Lourdes.

The Queenship of Mary: A Commentary by Bishop Barron 6:30