The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary
This is the crowning feast of our Blessed Lady. On this day the Church celebrates her departure from this world, and the triumphant entrance into Heaven, not only of her soul, but, according to pious belief (though not of faith), of her body also. Try and imagine the respect, honour, and admiration with which she was received by the whole heavenly court. Words fail us when we try to express with what love and graciousness the Most Holy Trinity welcomed her; how the Father received her as His daughter, the Son as His mother, and the Holy Ghost as His spouse.
What does Mary do for us from the heights of Heaven? She intercedes for us, she pleads our cause, she obtains and distributes heavenly favors. She is a queen of mercy. Her power equals her goodness. Let us, therefore, pray to her in all our wants of body and soul. Let us, above all, implore her to obtain for us a good death, and that constant fidelity to grace which will procure it.
If we are really anxious to be devout to our Blessed Mother, and to obtain her protection, we must strive daily to rid ourselves of sin, which offends her Divine Son, and, moreover, earnestly endavour to imitate her virtues- viz., her love for God, her humility, purity, patience, and conformity with the Divine Will.
O Mother dear! look down;
The Mother’s face beams kindly
When other faces frown.
Though thou art Queen of Heaven,
And reign’st in joy above,
Yet still, O dearest Mother!
Look down on us with love.”
One day this amiable Saint was asked if her loved the Virgin Mary. Immediately his face flushed and beamed with angelic sweetness, and raising his eyes towards Heaven, he replied: ‘She is my mother; what can I say more?”Later on, in his eighteenth year, speaking to Father Emmanuel Sa about the Feast of the Assumption, which was approaching, he exclaimed, “O Father, what a happy day for the Saints when our Lady entered Heaven! I feel confident that they celebrate the memory of it every year, and I hope to be present the next time.” His youth and good health prevented any serious notice being taken of his remark. Shortly after he began to show signs of weakness, then got so ill that he received the last Sacraments on the eve of the Feast of the Assumption. When asked if he was willing to die or live, according to God’s holy will, he replied, “My heart is ready, O God, my heart is ready.” He then lay peacefully, with his eys raised to Heaven or towards and image of our Lady, which he pressed to his lips frequently. After midnight he began to fail fast. Suddenly his face changed, and a wonderful radiance rested on it as he gazed on our Lady, who appeared to him surrounded by a number of virgins, who came to bear his soul to Paradise. As the sun rose on the Feast of the Assumption he breathed his last, surrounded by the Father and Brothers, who shed abundant tears as they kissed his hands and fee reverently.