REVELATION 11:19A, 12:1-6A 1 CORINTHIANS 15:20-27 LUKE 1:39-56
The feast of the Assumption of Mary into heaven celebrates much more than Mary being taken bodily to heaven. This feast speaks hope to a suffering Church locked in a life and death conflict with the world. Let’s reflect on this aspect of the feast by focusing on the passage from the Book of Revelation that we’ve read today.
We see a cosmic image: a woman, clothed with the sun, and the moon at her feet. Wearing a crown adorned with 12 stars, she’s the image of the Church crowned as the glory of the Israel and its 12 tribes, and as the New Israel built upon the 12 apostles of the Lamb. The child about to be born is the Christ and his Kingdom, “destined to rule over all the nations.”
A second image appears, a red dragon with 7 crowned heads and 10 horns. This is the dark, brutal, powerful energy which is anti-Christ. At the time this was written the dragon was Rome using its power to prevent the birth of the Kingdom. Today, that same dragon takes the form of hostile governments, powerful global corporations, and misguided religious demagogues.
The Second Vatican Council crowned Mary, the Mother of the Church. This title firmly placed her in the upper room with the apostles and disciples waiting for the fire of the Paraclete, and the coming of the Kingdom. Today we look at this image of the woman clothed with the sun with the moon at her feet and see Mary, the mother of the Church inspiring hope and strength as we resist all that’s antiChrist. Today we’re the disciples joining Mary in the upper room awaiting the birth of the Kingdom of God.
Mother of the Church,
the Lord is with you and with his faithful people.
Bless us, as you blessed the early disciples with courage, hope and joy.
Give strength to our faith as we wait in anticipation of the new world, the Kingdom of God.