The Assumption of Mary

Post Date: August 8, 2021
Author: Jeff Borski

A Reflection on the Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, August 15, 2021

August 15th is a date that I personally cannot, and will not, ever forget since I share my wedding anniversary on the very same day! This day serves as a beautiful reminder to me of the love of a woman, a mother, one that would do anything to see me, our children, our grandchildren enter the Kingdom of Heaven. 

My wife models the love of Mary because she cares and loves me and our children deeply. Mary does the same as she intercedes for all the children of God. Her goal, her desire, is to bring all of us to Jesus, her Son, so that we may enjoy the abundant love and grace of our Heavenly Father.

As we celebrate the Assumption of Mary, we should take some time to reflect upon her life and see some of the important moments in her journey. Some of these moments may seem difficult to understand, or maybe, we may find and discover new meaning and relevance for ourselves. 

Maybe we should start by asking how Mary escaped the death that each of us will one day experience? Was it the immense love that Jesus had for his mother that made this possible? Personally, I would like to think so. I want to think that it would be a big part of the answer. But, if we turn to Scripture (Rom 6:23) – It says, For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord..….. we hear in that passage that death is the result of sin. Remembering that in the Garden of Eden, there was no death, that is until the fall of Adam and Eve, where we inherit original sin, and humanity loses immortality. 

But, Mary, through the Immaculate Conception, was conceived sinless and remained sinless throughout her life, her absence of sin is showing us that God himself commissioned Mary for the purpose of bringing the Divine to earth in human form for the salvation of His children.  

She was created immaculate by God above all other heavenly and earthly creations, and she is inseparable from Jesus, inseparable in the way a mother is always attached to her children, through the very fact that she has shared her very blood and body with the child within her womb.

This total absence of sin upon Mary indicates a special divine favor from God and allows her to be assumed into Heaven, both body and soul when her earthly life has come to an end.

Mary is taken up into the glory of Heaven, and with God and in God she is “Queen of Heaven and earth.” Therefore, if she is with God and in God, God who is close to us, who created us in his image, which points to the fact, He is “within” each one of us, … then she is also very close to each one of us. 

Being close to each one of us, she knows our hearts, can hear our prayers, can help us with her motherly kindness and has been given to us, as Jesus said, precisely as a “mother” to whom we can turn to at every moment.

Mary is not only the mother of Jesus “The Mother of God” she is also her Son’s most excellent disciple. Although she would seem to be a timid and quiet woman, she was more outspoken than we might think.  

She indeed was a woman who did not hesitate to proclaim that God vindicates the humble and the oppressed, and that those who abused their power in this world would lose their privileged positions in the next.

Another moment in Mary’s life is the “Incarnation,”…. that is, the virginal birth of God in human form. Jesus is presented as our redemption, our salvation through the womb of Mary, the stainless Holy vessel through whom Jesus comes to us as the Word made flesh!

This should always remind us of how God also moves powerfully in our lives. We should recognize and respond to God with humility and openness; we must be welcoming while respecting and having dignity for all life, from conception to the final moments of life.

We also need to meditate on the fact that if Mary would not have been obedient, if she would not have responded to God’s Will, then our redemption would have been in great jeopardy. 

When Mary heard the Word of God at the Annunciation of the angel Gabriel, “Hail, full of grace” she acted upon it, she responded. In that response, we are provided the opportunity to experience God’s great love and mercy for us.  

If we turn to the “Word,” to Scripture, we can find four words that sum up the life of Mary. 

The First is – Fiat. This was the response she gave to the angel Gabriel “Let it be done to me according to your word“… this Fiat opened a floodgate of God’s love and mercy for us. I ask, What are our Fiat moments? Who are we bringing the love and mercy of God to?

The Second word – Magnificat, meaning to magnify, we see this in her response to the grace of God in her life. She always! Always points us to her Son, not only points but expands our vision, magnifying her Son’s great love and mission. In our daily routines, how do we magnify Jesus to others?

Our Third word is – Conservabat, To treasure, … “she pondered and cherished all these memories and events in her heart.” We must be mindful that these memories and events in Mary’s life were not always joyful; in fact, at times, they were very harsh and painful. 

To be uprooted from all you know and flee to another nation so that your baby son could escape the execution called out by King Herod. Also, to be plagued by a missing child for three days would be devastating for any mother, but there would be much more to come that would strain her heart. With God, though, she knew that good was to come, and she treasured it. 

Can we look upon not only our great moments but also our worst, and treasure each event knowing that God was there leading us in the great and protecting us in the worst of those moments, … Loving us always.

And lastly – Stabat, To stand or remain, … she watched her Son die for humanity while standing at the foot of the Cross. As she remained and waited for the fulfillment of Simeon’s prophecy, there at the Cross, her heart was pierced!  

Will we withstand the piercing when called to fulfill God’s mission, God’s will in our lives?

In our Fiat, let us be open, attentive, and obedient to God’s will and if we need to discern that will, turn to our heavenly mother, turn to Mary and ask her to intercede. The Son will never refuse His mother’s intercessory request. 

Magnify, we need to celebrate, with all our strength, the relevance of “The Word”! 

Just as Mary gives us her Magnificat in our Gospel, we need to proclaim the greatness of our Lord. We need to rejoice and recognize how our God and Savior has looked favorably upon us.

Treasure, … all the moments of our lives, good and bad, for in the bad is where we learn the power of goodness, and in that goodness, we become the best representation of Jesus’ love and mercy.

Let us stand at the foot of the Cross and patiently wait for the written Word to speak to us, even in unexpected and unwelcome ways, always understanding that the road to redemption and salvation can be difficult while we wait to see God’s will unfold in our lives.

We should always be mindful that just as Mary was created by God for the purpose of bringing forth a Divine body, that is … Christ Jesus, into our world, God also has created us in His abundant love for a purpose. 

That purpose, first and foremost, is to return God’s love with love. We can do that when we love our brothers and sisters. When that becomes difficult at times, then we can turn to our mother. Just like a child turns to its mother and the mother intercedes in the child’s welfare. 

When we ask Mary to pray for us, our Holy Mother understands and hears us; she knows our hearts and can help us with her motherly virtues. 

She brings to my mind the vision of a mother that holds her children in her arms when they are sad or hurt, nursing them with kindness and love, a mother who reaches out to her children and takes them by the hand and leads them on a path to home. 

We celebrate the Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary by celebrating that Mary’s bodily home is in Heaven. Through her, we are provided the opportunity to experience God’s mercy and participate in salvation, and to being an heir to the Kingdom of Heaven.

I humbly ask Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death!

Author: Deacon Jeff Borski, Sacred Heart Catholic Church

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