Homily — Assumption MMVIII 8-15-8

Homily — Assumption MMVIII 8-15-8

For over 1300 years, the Church has celebrated Our Blessed Mother’s Assumption into Heaven each year on this day (tomorrow’s date), August 15, in the middle of the summer season.

It is this time of the year that the earth and lakes, ocean and rivers are at their warmest; that the trees and fields are heavy with fruit and crops; and that the earth and sea and sky is teeming with all kinds of living creatures.

It is fitting that in the earthly glory of mid August, we celebrate the Heavenly glory of Mary’s Assumption Body and Soul into Heaven.

St. Paul in the 2nd Reading today states Christ has been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep. Several month’s back, when we celebrated Christ’s Resurrection and Ascension, it was still the springtime, buds could only be found on the trees, and the earthly fruit spring promised us as well as the heavenly fruit Jesus’ Resurrection and Ascension promised us was still a ways off. Today, as we celebrate the sinless Virgin Mary’s Resurrection and Assumption, we see the fruit promised by Jesus at it’s ripest and most beautiful.

Mary’s Assumption makes us even more hopeful that we will also share in Her Son Jesus’ Resurrection, because unlike Jesus who is true God and true Man, Mary is only a mere human like we are, although free from sin.

And just as it is beneficial to meditate often on Jesus Risen and Glorified in our daily prayer time, to picture Him before us in His glorified body, so it is also very beneficial for us to meditate often on our Mother Mary Risen and Glorified, to imagine Her before us in Her glorified body.

To aid us in our meditation, there are several Old Testament passages that have been used by the Church down through the ages in describing the Virgin Mary in Glory.

The Song of Songs 6:10 states: Who is she that comes forth as the morning rising, fair as the moon, bright as the sun, terrible as an army set in battle array?

And Psalm 45, parts of which are used in the Mass for Assumption Day, says in verses 14-16 All glorious is the king’s daughter as she enters, her raiment threaded with gold; In embroidered apparel she is led to the King . . . . amid gladness and joy she enters His palace.

And of course, in the New Testament Book of Revelation, St. John the Beloved sees a Vision of Mary, the Ark of the New Covenant, inside God’s Temple in Heaven. He described it as A great sign . . . a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet and on her head a crown of twelve stars.

Another help in meditating on the Assumption is to remember that Mary’s Immaculate soul is like a mirror which perfectly reflects God’s love and justice (which is why in the Litany of Loretto we invoke Mary as “Mirror of Justice).

Revelation 21:23 states that “(The Heavenly City of Jerusalem) has no need of sun or moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gave it light, and it’s lamp was (Jesus,) the Lamb (of God).” And so from the moment of her Assumption into Heaven, Mary the Mirror would have perfectly reflected that Light of Her Glorified Son, which means that Heaven is twice as bright now that Mary is there. And all the other Angels and Saints put together cannot equal the beauty and brightness that can now be found in Mary’s glorified Body and Soul.

And so we rejoice with the Church throughout the world that we are beloved Sons and Daughters of this Woman clothed with the Sun.

And we pray that she would intercede for us, that one day we may all be Soul and Body, with her and Jesus in the Everlasting Kingdom.

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