Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary – Mass during the Day

the-assumption-and-coronation-of-the-virginCentral Idea: The Blessed Virgin Mary is the new Ark of the Covenant. Doctrine: The Assumption. Practical Application: Devotion to the Blessed Virgin.

Lectionary 622.

Central Idea: The Blessed Virgin Mary is the new Ark of the Covenant.

God’s temple in heaven was opened,
and the ark of his covenant could be seen in the temple.

A great sign appeared in the sky, a woman clothed with the sun,
with the moon under her feet,
and on her head a crown of twelve stars.
She was with child and wailed aloud in pain as she labored to give birth.
Then another sign appeared in the sky;
it was a huge red dragon, with seven heads and ten horns,
and on its heads were seven diadems.
Its tail swept away a third of the stars in the sky
and hurled them down to the earth.
Then the dragon stood before the woman about to give birth,
to devour her child when she gave birth.
She gave birth to a son, a male child,
destined to rule all the nations with an iron rod.
Her child was caught up to God and his throne.
The woman herself fled into the desert
where she had a place prepared by God.

Then I heard a loud voice in heaven say:
“Now have salvation and power come,
and the Kingdom of our God
and the authority of his Anointed One.”

  • The Ark of the Covenant was the beautiful, golden box, made after God’s own design, which held the two tablets of the Mosaic Law. It was eventually placed in the very center of the Temple in Jerusalem.
  • The Ark of the New Covenant is the Blessed Virgin Mary, beautiful and pure, preserved from Original Sin and filled with graces by God’s own design, inside whose womb dwelt our Law, Jesus Christ. She is placed in the heart of Christian devotion and honored with hyperdulia, the highest honor a creature can receive.

Responsorial Psalm Ps 45:10, 11, 12, 16

R. The queen stands at your right hand, arrayed in gold.
The queen takes her place at your right hand in gold of Ophir.
R. The queen stands at your right hand, arrayed in gold.
Hear, O daughter, and see; turn your ear,
forget your people and your father’s house.
R. The queen stands at your right hand, arrayed in gold.
So shall the king desire your beauty;
for he is your lord.
R. The queen stands at your right hand, arrayed in gold.
They are borne in with gladness and joy;
they enter the palace of the king.
R. The queen stands at your right hand, arrayed in gold.
  • The Blessed Virgin Mary is the Queen Mother of all Christians. That is, she is the mother of the King, Jesus Christ, and so is honored for her status itself, for what God gave her to make her worthy of this status, and for what she did herself to merit it.
  • This psalm reflects the surpassing moral goodness of the Blessed Virgin. This moral goodness is depicted as ideal physical beauty.
  • Mary is depicted as a beautifully arrayed bride. In Catholic piety she is called Spouse of the Holy Spirit.
  • God looks at Mary with a love akin to how this king looked at his bride.
  • It is also not too far a stretch to say that God looks at us with a love akin to how this king looked at his bride. It is not too far a stretch to say that God would like to make us, with our cooperation, as beautiful inside as this bride was on the outside.

Reading 2 1 Cor 15:20-27

Brothers and sisters:
Christ has been raised from the dead,
the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep.
For since death came through man,
the resurrection of the dead came also through man.
For just as in Adam all die,
so too in Christ shall all be brought to life,
but each one in proper order:
Christ the firstfruits;
then, at his coming, those who belong to Christ;
then comes the end,
when he hands over the Kingdom to his God and Father,
when he has destroyed every sovereignty
and every authority and power.
For he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet.
The last enemy to be destroyed is death,
for “he subjected everything under his feet.”
  • Christ is the first to rise from the dead and the rest of us will arise in “proper order” at his second coming. St. Paul is speaking of the resurrection of the body in glory.
  • In Mary’s case, the proper order for her was her Assumption into heaven, body and soul, since she never sinned and so it was not fitting for her body to undergo corruption.

Gospel Lk 1:39-56

Mary set out
and traveled to the hill country in haste
to a town of Judah,
where she entered the house of Zechariah
and greeted Elizabeth.
When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting,
the infant leaped in her womb,
and Elizabeth, filled with the Holy Spirit,
cried out in a loud voice and said,
“Blessed are you among women,
and blessed is the fruit of your womb.
And how does this happen to me,
that the mother of my Lord should come to me?
For at the moment the sound of your greeting reached my ears,
the infant in my womb leaped for joy.
Blessed are you who believed
that what was spoken to you by the Lord
would be fulfilled.”

And Mary said:
“My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord;
my spirit rejoices in God my Savior
for he has looked with favor on his lowly servant.
From this day all generations will call me blessed:
the Almighty has done great things for me
and holy is his Name.
He has mercy on those who fear him
in every generation.
He has shown the strength of his arm,
and has scattered the proud in their conceit.
He has cast down the mighty from their thrones,
and has lifted up the lowly.
He has filled the hungry with good things,
and the rich he has sent away empty.
He has come to the help of his servant Israel
for he has remembered his promise of mercy,
the promise he made to our fathers,
to Abraham and his children forever.”

Mary remained with her about three months
and then returned to her home.

  • For 2000 years, Christians have agreed with and echoed St. Elizabeth’s words: “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb.”
  • For 2000 years, Christians have agreed with and echoed the Blessed Virgin Mary’s words, “From this day, all generations will call me blessed.” In her, God’s promise to Abraham is fulfilled. God had said to Abraham, “by your descendants shall all the nations of the earth bless themselves” (Gn 22:18). Now, the great descendant of Abraham has come into the world to redeem it, Jesus Christ. And this happened because the Blessed Virgin Mary said “yes” to God.

Doctrine: The Assumption

  • What is the doctrine of the Assumption we celebrate today?
    • “[T]he 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” (CCC 966).
  • “The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin is a singular participation in her Son’s Resurrection and an anticipation of the resurrection of other Christians” (CCC 966).
  • Christ rose from the dead with his glorified body never to die again. The Blessed Virgin Mary never experienced physical death, that is, the separation of her body from her soul, because she was preserved at the moment of her own conception from original sin and she never committed an actual sin.
  • Her Assumption anticipates the final judgment when God will reunite our bodies with our immortal souls.
  • The Queenship of Mary is implicit in her Assumption.
    • As the Psalmist said, “The queen stands at your right hand, arrayed in gold.” Mary’s beauty is her holiness, fittingly arrayed in the golden glory of her body.

Practical Application: Devotion to the Blessed Virgin

  • “The Church rightly honors “the Blessed Virgin with special devotion. . . . The liturgical feasts dedicated to the Mother of God and Marian prayer, such as the rosary, an ‘epitome of the whole Gospel,’ express this devotion to the Virgin Mary” (CCC 971).
    • We properly show this special devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary by participating in this liturgical feast.
    • We also honor her through Marian prayer, especially the Rosary.
    • Why not say the Rosary daily? It can be recited in the family, while walking alone, while driving, before or after daily Mass.
  • In honoring the Blessed Virgin Mary, we get back from her much more than we give. The reason is that she mediates for us with her Son. The King of Heaven listens to the petitions of his Queen Mother.
  • God wants to associate human beings in his work to save and sanctify human beings. Mary is the greatest example of this collaboration. Then come the saints. God wants us to participate in this work as well.
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One Response to “Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary – Mass during the Day”

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  1. Emeruem Cosmas says:

    Thanks a lot

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