Wednesday, August 15, 2012

The Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary

The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary celebrates her being taken up body and soul into heaven when her earthly title was finished. It first began to be celebrated as a feast day in the Eastern Church after the Ecumenical Council of Ephesus (431) proclaimed Mary the Mother of God. By the sixth century, the feast celebrated Mary’s Dormition, “her falling asleep”. The western church began to celebrate this feast around 650. The Church’s teaching on the Assumption was formally proclaimed a doctrine by Pope Pius XII in 1950.

In today’s society, many idolize sensuality, materialism, and self-indulgence. In contrast, the celebration of the feast of the Assumption Our Blessed Virgin Mary turns our eyes away from these temporary, earthly attachments and directs our focus on the dignity and destiny of our human body and the beauty and dignity of womanhood. It turns our eyes upon the true life which awaits us beyond the grave – eternal life.

May we take heart that one day our bodies and souls will be reunited with God after death. On her special feast day, let us ask Our Mother for the grace to keep our eyes fixed on her Son as we place our heart in hers, forever united with her, that we may be brought to the glory of the Resurrection.


"[P]recisely because Mary is with God and in God, she is very close to each one of us. While she lived on this earth she could only be close to a very few people. Being in God, who is actually 'within' all of us, Mary shares in this closeness of God."

~ Pope Benedict XVI

Recommended Reading

The Holy Bible (Catholic)
Catechism of the Catholic Church
Munificentissimus Deus
Lumen Gentium
Redemptoris Mater
Introduction to Mary; Mark Miravalle
True Devotion to the Blessed Virgin by St. Louis De Montfort
The Secret of Mary by St. Louis De Montfort.
An Overview of the Life and Spirituality of Saint Louis De Montfort by Father Pat Gaffney.
Montfortian Total Consecration to the Blessed Virgin Mary. (This is a 40-day prayer consecrating oneself to Jesus through Mary.)
The Little Crown of the Blessed Virgin Mary, a morning prayer recommended by St. Louis De Montfort.
Methods for Saying the Rosary by St. Louis De Montfort
Mary Mystery of Mercy, Marie-Dominique Philippe, O.P.
Queen Mother: A Biblical Theology of Mary's Queenship, Edward Sri
Catholic for a Reason II: Scripture and the Mystery of the Mother of God; Scott Hahn (Editor) and Leon J. Suprenant, Jr (Author)
Hail Holy Queen, Scott Hahn
The Glories of Mary, St. Alphonsus de Liguori, Tan Books
Theotokos: Woman, Mother, Disciple, John Paul II, Pauline Books and Media
Saint Alphonsus de Liguori: Where is the Tomb of the Virgin Mary and what is its significance?
Mary and the Fathers of the Church: The Blessed Virgin Mary in Patristic Thought, Luigi Gambero
Mary: The Church at the SourceJoseph Cardinal Ratzinger, Hans Urs von Balthasar

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