Browsing Fr. James Marshall Weekly Blog

THE ASSUMPTION

Aug 13, 2018

THE ASSUMPTION OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY

In the section of the catechism dealing with Mary’s Motherhood with regard to the Church we read that, “Mary’s role in the Church is inseparable from her union with Christ and flows directly from it. ‘This union of the mother with the Son in the work of salvation is made manifest from the time of Christ’s virginal conception up to his death’, it is made manifest above all at the hour of his Passion.” CCC 964

The bodily Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary into heaven is the consequence of union that she has with her Son, Jesus. It makes perfect sense if we accept the truth of the bodily resurrection and ascension of our Lord into heaven. Blessed John Henry Cardinal Newman puts it this way: “If the Creator comes on earth in the form of a servant and a creature, why may not His Mother, on the other hand, rise to be the Queen of heaven, and be clothed with the sun, and have the moon under her feet?

Her whole life was tied up in the life of her Son who was sent by the Father to redeem fallen humanity. Jesus, her Son, even preserved her from the stain of original sin (the Immaculate Conception) so that she could be that perfect vessel through which he we come into the world. But by no means did Jesus just pass through Mary to get into the world, otherwise he would not have a human nature, but he became incarnate in womb of the Blessed Virgin Mary in order to take upon himself a human nature through which he was able to suffer and die for our sins.

This is the way that the Catechism explains it for us: In her Assumption, “Finally the Immaculate Virgin, preserved free from all stain of original sin, when the course of her earthly life was finished, was taken up body and soul into heavenly glory, and exalted by the Lord as Queen over all things, so that she might be the more fully conformed to her Son, the Lord of lords and conqueror of sin and death.” The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin is a singular participation in her Son’s Resurrection and an anticipation of the resurrection of other Christians:

In giving birth you kept your virginity; in your Dormition you did not leave the world, O Mother of God, but were joined to the source of Life. You conceived the living God and, by your prayers, will deliver our souls from death (Byzantine Liturgy).

The bodily Assumption of Mary is for us a message of hope that one day we too will all share with Mary the fullness of heavenly glory by virtue of our union with Jesus her Son.