As August is quickly coming to a close and school is beginning, we should be diligent students of Our Lady. The celebrations of the Assumption (August 15th) and Queenship of Mary (August 22nd) serves as a reminder to us that our destiny is to be in heaven also crowned with glory if we are faithful like Mary.
The Assumption of Mary is a wonderful precursor of our own resurrection that was made possible through Christ’s rising from the dead. St. Paul reminds us, “As death came through one man, through the one man Christ has the resurrection also come. Through him, all things will be restored to life, but each one in its proper order. Christ as the first fruit, and then after the coming of Christ, those who belong to Christ.” Mary’s Assumption body and soul into heaven fulfills this passage, because she belongs to Christ more than anyone else. She not only is the mother of God and gave him an earthly body, but her union with God was never hindered because she was the perfect disciple who was the handmaid of the Lord and never sinned.
Great joy fills our hearts when we realize that this solemnity is a continuation of Easter, where Christ resurrected and ascended into heaven. It is a fulfillment of the promise he made when he said he goes to prepare a place for us, who are faithful to him. Therefore Mary’s Assumption gives us hope, because it is a sign of our future resurrection and eternal life, if we remain close to Christ by keeping our baptismal promises. Her Queenship is a crown of glory that we too can receive through our cooperation with God’s grace as Mary did.
So, we celebrate these great Marian celebrations, when Mary, our Advocate, was taken to heaven, where she is crowned as Queen and intercedes for our salvation as the Mother of the Judge, the Mother of Mercy. What a great consolation! Though we are pilgrims on earth, our Mother has gone before us and is pointing to the reward of our efforts. She reminds us that it is possible to reach these rewards, and that if we are faithful, we will in fact do so.
In the Immaculate Heart of Mary,
Fr. Andrew Heiman