Written by Sheryl Tirol, friend of Stella & Tide
Although undocumented in Scripture, the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary is an important part of the tradition of the Church. As Pope Pius XII declared in 1950, “We pronounce, declare and define it to be a divinely revealed dogma that the immaculate Mother of God, the ever Virgin Mary, having completed the course of her earthly life, was assumed body and soul to heavenly glory.”
Though that fact is a tremendous mystery, when you stop to consider Mary’s life, it shouldn’t come as a shock.
Throughout her life, the Blessed Mother wholeheartedly trusted that God would protect and help her when she needed it most. During the Annunciation, she did not hesitate with her unwavering response: “Behold, I am the handmaid of the lord: Be it done unto me according to thy word." (Luke 1:38). During the Passion, she remained faithful to God despite the immense amount of pain she felt when Jesus, her beloved son, was crucified. In every circumstance, God provided for her as a loving Father, faithfully fulfilling His promises and carrying her in His arms. Why would the end of her earthly life be any different?
For me, the first thing that comes to mind when I think about the Assumption is the power of Mary’s intercessory prayer. In times of despair, I often turn to the Virgin Mary by praying the Rosary. If time does not permit, I will say at least three Hail Marys or the Angelus. I meditate on her faith in our God to care for her in her difficult moments—how she endured with a hope and love that never faltered. I am comforted when I think about how the Blessed Mother had the strength to continue even in moments of uncertainty and pain.
In this world, we are often tested, and turning to our Blessed Mother is a gift and a reminder that we are not alone. She is not only Jesus’ mother, but she is ours as well. And like every good mother, she lovingly guides us towards what’s best for us: a deeper relationship with her Son, Jesus Christ.
I once heard a priest say that women have two characteristics that make them unique—the ability to love deeply, and the ability to suffer deeply. By God’s grace, these characteristics were truly brought to perfection in the Blessed Virgin Mary. The next time you pray and petition our Blessed Mother, whether in a simple prayer or through the Rosary, remember the abundance of love and grace bestowed upon her—and the love and grace awaiting all who say “Yes” to God.