Sunday, August 15, 2010

Feast of the Assumption of Our Lady

In Christ shall all be brought to life, each one in proper order (1Co 15:22-23)

...Today the Virgin Mary rises gloriously to heaven. She completes the happiness of angels and saints. For it was she whose simple word of greeting made the child in his mother's womb leap for joy (Lk 1:44). What, then, must have been the rejoicing of the angels and saints when they found themselves able to hear her voice, see her face, and rejoice in her blessed presence! And what a great feast her glorious Assumption is for us, beloved brethren, what reason for happiness and cause for joy today! Mary's presence brightens the whole world, so greatly do the heaven shine, lightened up by the brilliance of the most holy Virgin. Therefore it is altogether fitting that the heavens resound with thanksgiving and praise.

Yet isn't it also right that, just as heaven rejoices in Mary's presence, we of the this world should mourn her absence? Not at all. Let us not weep since we have no lasting city here below (Heb 13:14) but seek that to which the Virgin Mary has come today. If even now we are registered among that city's inhabitants then it is fitting that we should call it to mind today..., share its joy, participate in the rejoicing that gladdens God's city today; for today it falls like dew upon our earth. Yes she, our queen, has gone before us and been received with so great a glory that we, her humble servants, may trustfully follow our sovereign, crying [with the Bride of the Song of Songs]: "Draw us! We will run to the sweet scent of your perfumes!" (Sg 1:3-4). Pilgrims on earth, we have sent our advocate before us..., the mother of mercy who will successfully plead our salvation. (St Bernard, Sermon for the Assumption)