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Assumption of the Blessed Mother

Assumption of the Virgin painted by Bartolome Esteban Murillo, 1670s

“My soul magnifies the Lord.” -The Magnificat

Pope Pius XII defined the Dogma of the Assumption on November 1st, 1950 but this belief had long since been in practice as a way to honor the Blessed Mother. Mary In her Immaculate Conception was preserved from the stain of Original Sin and by her perfect faith in God’s Will, she was subsequently spared from death and decay. In the words of Elizabeth, mother of John the Baptist, “Blessed is she who believed“ (Luke 1:45).

Mary is the most perfect example to humanity. Even the just soul must be separated from the body, the body left on earth to decay. At the end of time, the body will be rejoined with the soul. Because of her perfection, God willed that Mary be exempt from this rule, which was a result of Original Sin of which she was also exempt.For the wage paid by sin is death; the gift freely given by God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. Mary was assumed into Heaven, body and soul, in a complete victory over death.

Out of respect for the incomparable dignity of His Mother and her mystical motherhood, Christ willed Mary’s Assumption so that Mother and Son might be reunited in Heaven. By assuming into Heaven, Mary embraced her rightful title as Queen of Heaven and earth. As a result, Mary is in total union with God and shares in the presence of God allowing her to be mother to all of humanity. As Pope Benedict XVI wrote in his homily on this date, 2005,

She always listens to us, she is always close to us, and being Mother of the Son, participates in the power of the Son and in his goodness. We can always entrust the whole of our lives to this Mother, who is not far from any one of us.

We have a mother in Heaven. And the Mother of God, the Mother of the Son of God, is our Mother. He himself has said so. He made her our Mother when he said to the disciple and to all of us: "Behold, your Mother!". We have a Mother in Heaven. Heaven is open, Heaven has a heart.

Excerpt from the Gospel today and the origin of the Magnificat Prayer:

My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior; because he has looked upon the humiliation of his servant. Yes, from now onwards all generations will call me blessed, for the Almighty has done great things for me. Holy is his name, and his faithful love extends age after age to those who fear him. He has used the power of his arm, he has routed the arrogant of heart. He has pulled down princes from their thrones and raised high the lowly. He has filled the starving with good things, sent the rich away empty. He has come to the help of Israel his servant, mindful of his faithful love according to the promise he made to our ancestors -- of his mercy to Abraham and to his descendants for ever (Luke 1:46-55)