Wednesday, August 13, 2008
Meditation for the Feast of the Assumption
Nicolas Poussin. The Assumption of the Virgin. 1650's.
Friday, August 15 is the Feast of the Assumption. It is a day prescribed by the Church for all Catholics to rejoice at the glory with which God has enriched His Holy Mother. In the United States, it is still a Holy Day of Obligation, but not in Canada, where our bishops have moved so many feast days to the closest Sunday. I am fortunate to have Friday off, so I will be attending the High Mass at the FSSP parish in Vancouver. It is well worth the forty-five minute drive.
Below is a meditation from St. Alphonsus' The Glories of Mary for the Feast of the Assumption.
Mary died, but how did she die? She died entirely detached from all created things; she died consumed by that Divine Love which during her whole life had always inflamed her most holy heart.
O holy Mother, thou hast already left the earth; do not forget us miserable pilgrims who remain in this valley of tears, struggling against so many enemies who wish to drag us to hell. Ah, by the merits of thy precious death be graciously pleased to obtain for us detachment from earthly things, the forgiveness of our sins, love of God, and holy perseverance; and when the hour of our death arrives, help us from heaven with thy prayers, and obtain for us that we may kiss thy feet in Paradise.
Mary died, and her most pure body was carried by the holy Apostles and placed in the sepulcher, where it was guarded by angels for three days; after which it was transported to Paradise; but her beautiful soul entered the Blessed Kingdom at the very moment in which she expired, accompanied by innumerable angels, and also accompanied by her Son Himself. When she had entered heaven, she humbly presented herself before God, adored Him, and with immense feeling thanked Him for the many graces He had bestowed upon her.
God embraced her, blessed her, and declared her Queen of the Universe, exalting her above all the angels and saints. But now, if, as the Apostle says, the human mind cannot comprehend the immense glory which God has prepared for His servants who have loved Him in this world, how great must be the glory which He bestowed on this most holy Mother, who on earth loved Him more than all the saints and angels, and loved Him with all her strength; so that when Mary entered heaven she alone could say to God, "O Lord, if on earth I did not love Thee as much as thou deservest, at least I loved Thee as much as I could love Thee."