Homily – Assumption MMX 8/15/10

Homily – Assumption MMX 8/15/10

Assumption of the Virgin  Michel Sittow (1469–1525)

Assumption of the Virgin Michel Sittow (1469–1525)

Arise, my beloved, my beautiful one, and come!

For see, the winter is past, and the song of the turtledove

is heard in our land.

We celebrate Mary’s Assumption into Heaven in the middle of summer, because on this day, the long winter of separation from her beloved Jesus is forever past and gone.

Today Mary is reunited, Body and Soul, with Jesus Her Beloved, as she enters the gates of Heaven.

It had been (according to one tradition), 15 years since she had last seen Him that Day He Ascended into Heaven.

She had wanted so much that day to have gone to Heaven with Him, she could not bear to be on this earth without Him.

But Jesus wanted Her to stay on earth a few years longer, to comfort and teach the Apostles, to tell them all about Jesus’ birth and early years, memories and mysteries which she had kept and pondered over constantly in her Immaculate Heart all these years.

And so after Jesus went away to Heaven, Mary embraced this separation from Her beloved. She certainly was consoled by His Holy Spirit that filled her heart and soul every day, and even more consoled by receiving Jesus in Holy Communion each day from the hands of Jesus’ beloved disciple and priest, St. John the Apostle who took care of her after Good Friday.

But despite this consolation and spiritual presence of Jesus, it was still a long winter, Mary yearned more than ever to go home to Him, Her body so desired to share in Her Son’s Resurrection, Her whole being wished to be with the Risen Jesus in Heaven.

And today we rejoice with Our Blessed Mother as Jesus answers Her prayer and says those words from the Old Testament Song of Songs:

Arise, my beloved, my beautiful one, and come!

For see, the winter is past, and the song of the turtledove

is heard in our land.

And as the Gospel says, Mary was Blessed because she heard the Word of God and kept it, Mary more than any other disciple of Jesus observed God’s word with every fiber of her being. Which is why at the end of her life, ever fiber of Mary’s being, Her Body and Soul, were taken up to Heaven to be with Jesus forever.

And you know, it was in some ways just as challenging for Mary to say “yes” whole-heartedly to God as it is for us to.

Yes, she was given special gifts like being immaculately conceived, but Mary also was given far and away the toughest vocation a human person ever had – to be the Mother of Jesus, and to hold all the sorrows He felt in her heart.

But the Key to Mary’s obedience, and the Key to our obedience, can be found in Mary’s Magnificat which we will read in tomorrow’s Gospel.

Mary says “My soul magnifies the Lord.”

Of all the things that were in her soul, Mary magnified the Lord and Him alone.

You and I have in our souls good things, bad things and indifferent things. And we also have in our soul if we are Baptized, the Lord Jesus who dwells in us through Faith.

We must choose what in our soul we are going to Magnify, what in our soul we’re going to put above all else.

We can magnify our sins, we can magnify our troubles, we can magnify frivolous things, we can even magnify good things, we can take things good in themselves and cherish them more than we cherish what God wants us to do.

May we say like Mary did “My soul magnifies the Lord and nothing else

Jesus says the Kingdom of God is like a mustard plant that starts out the tiniest of seeds, but has the potential to grow into the largest of trees.

We like Mary need to magnify that tiny seed within us, we need to see that that tiny seed is growing bigger each day through daily prayer and meditation on God Word, through daily renouncing our own will and taking up our Cross and following Jesus, and through daily acts of charity.

If we magnify the Lord in our Souls, we will soon find those souls of ours already on earth with Mary and Jesus, even now enjoying a foretaste of what they are experiencing.

And if you and I magnify the Lord in our Souls each day, then one day you and I will hear the Lord Jesus say to us:

Arise, my beloved, my beautiful one, and come!

For see, the winter is past, and the song of the turtledove

is heard in our land.

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