Tuesday, August 15, 2006

....and the Lord will raise us up.....

Today is the Solemnity of the Dormition, also called the Assumption, of the Blessed Virgin Mary. As we all know perfectly well, holy Mother Church never defines anything about the Blessed Virgin Mary unless it tells us something about Jesus, or tells us something about us. This is why, short of a new heresy arising about why we cannot pray for each other, the folk pushing for a new Marian definition about "Mediatrix Coredemptrix" are going to be greatly disappointed. So, what is Holy Mother Church setting out to teach us by defining the content of this feast as doctrine? What does the Dormition, alias the Assumption, mean for us believers?

First, a proper definition of this feast: Mary, the mother of our Lord Jesus Christ, at the end of her life on earth, was taken up to heaven by her Son, both soul and body together. There she lives forever in the glory of the Presence of God in her resurrection body.

Note that she did not not die --- though that would not have been out of line, since Enoch did not die, nor Elijah, and maybe not Moses either, and some even claim not Arthur the King. She did die, and her Son resurrected her, and took her to Heaven.

This is not so very different than what has been promised to each one of us. Dormition, falling asleep in the Lord, will come for each of us. (Nobody gets out of this world alive!) We are made "to be happy with Him forever and ever in heaven", as the first grade religious education book taught us. And just as His mother Mary has already been resurrected to dwell in heaven body and soul together, the time will come when He will raise each of us up, and each of our souls will rejoin our resurrection bodies to the praise and glory of God.

Mary is the first-fruit of the general resurrection. Where and as she is, so shall we come to be, whole people, body and soul together, happy with God our Creator and Father in His eternal presence.


Mimi said...

Happy Feast Day!

Anonymous said...

I admit to knowing much less than you about the subject, and you seem to prefer that the feast be referred to using the term 'dormition' rather than 'assumption'. ("...dormition, alias assumption...") Since the vast majority of folks I know are more familiar with the latter term, I'm curious why 'dormition' would be preferred.