Yesterday was a Holy Day of Obligation in the Catholic Church. One of those extra days that Catholics are required to attend Mass. (Yes, I probably should have written about this yesterday, but I doubt it would have been good – it’s amazing what a good night’s sleep can do for you!) We celebrated the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, the day that, instead of dying and being buried in a tomb, God took her into Heaven, body and soul. I know there are Protestants out there reading this, thinking, “There is no such thing in the Bible about this. Those Catholics are just trying to justify their worship of Mary.” Of, course, we do NOT worship Mary. We love her, we adore her, we ask her to pray for us (just as you would ask your friends to pray for you), but we do not worship her. But, back to the Holy Day. My parish is blessed with a wonderful pastor (I even had another priest tell me that I have a good pastor.) We have Mass on Tuesday mornings and afterward, several of us go to a local restaurant for coffee and conversation & Father Jim goes with us. He loves to teach and is a very good teacher, so we usually will ask him questions about Church doctrine, or more commonly, about Scripture. One Tuesday, the conversation came around to Mary. Fr Jim said that he has told non-Catholic Christians that the Assumption makes sense logically because Mary carried Jesus (God) in her womb, so would God want Mary’s body to disintegrate? Of course He wouldn’t, so He raised Mary to Heaven, body and soul. For those of you looking for a prayer for glorifying God, or for an example of how to love God, I am including the Magnificat, also called the Canticle of The Blessed Virgin Mary, from Luke 1:46-55.
My soul doth magnify the Lord:
And my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour
Because He hath regarded the lowliness of His handmaid: for, behold, from henceforth all generations shall call me blessed.
For He that is mighty hath done great things to me: and holy is His Name.
And His mercy is from generation until generations, to them that fear Him.
He hath showed might with His arm: He hath scattered the proud in the conceit of their heart.
He hath put down the mighty from their seat, and hath exalted the lowly.
He hath filled the hungry with good things: and the rich he hath sent empty away.
He hath received Israel His servant, being mindful of His mercy:
As He spoke to our fathers, to Abraham and to his seed for ever.