The Assumption of our Blessed Lady
This Sunday, we celebrate a great Marian feast: the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. The Assumption is the great event when Mary was taken up into heaven. In Mary, we find the quintessential model of discipleship. English theologian Caryll Houselander tells us: “The one thing that she did and does is the one thing that we all have to do, namely, to bear Christ into the world. Christ must be born from every soul, formed in every life.” This means that we all must emulate Mary, the first Christian. By virtue of being a Christian, we bear the name of Christ. The question we must ask ourselves is, are we Christians in name only, or are we Christians in the way it matters: in words and in action? How do we seek to “bear Christ into the world”, as Houselander exhorts us?
After the angel Gabriel spoke to her, Mary said, “May it be done to me according to your word.” Mary’s life illustrates how we allow God to work in us, to be open to what God asks of us in Christ. Most probably, angels will not announce God’s intentions for us, but our life and surroundings, the needs of those around us and of our world, and our faithfulness to prayer will all help lead us to what will give our Christian lives meaning. Mary is a human being like us, saved by Christ, not some kind of goddess. Mary’s Assumption shows us the final result of God’s activity in Christ in us: the resurrection. Today’s feast is a concrete picture of what we believe God intends for every faithful follower of Christ. Today, we celebrate Mary’s new life with God and what God has in store for all of us.