“All glorious is the king’s daughter" - (Psalm 45, 14)
“A great sign appeared in the sky, a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet,
and on her head a crown of twelve stars.”
"The Assumption of Mary is a singular participation in the Resurrection of Christ” - H.H. Blessed John Paul II
The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary
Pope Pius XII
Pope Pius XII under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, and after consulting all the bishops of the Catholic Church, and listening to the sentiments of the faithful, on November 1, 1950, solemnly defined with his supreme apostolic authority, the dogma of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. This was proclaimed in the Constitution "Munificentissimus Deus":
“After we have poured forth prayers of supplication again and again to God, and have invoked the light of the Spirit of Truth, for the glory of Almighty God who has lavished his special affection upon the Virgin Mary, for the honor of her Son, the immortal King of the Ages and the Victor over sin and death, for the increase of the glory of that same august Mother, and for the joy and exultation of the entire Church; by the authority of our Lord Jesus Christ, of the Blessed Apostles Peter and Paul, and by our own authority, 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 into heavenly glory."
What is the foundation of this dogma? Pope Pius XII presented several fundamental reasons for the definition of this dogma:
1-The immunity of Mary from all sin: the decomposition of the body is a consequence of sin, and since Mary was free from all sin, she was exempt from the universal law of corruption, being able then to enter promptly, in body and soul, into the glory of heaven.
2-Her Divine Maternity: since Christ’s body was formed in the body of Mary; it was fitting that the body of Mary would participate of the same privilege of the Body of Christ. She conceived Jesus, gave birth to Him, nourished Him, cared for Him, laid Him on her chest. We cannot imagine that Jesus would allow the body that gave Him life to corrupt.
3-Her Perpetual Virginity: since her body was preserved in virginal integrity, (all for Jesus and being a living tabernacle) it was fitting that after her death she would not suffer corruption.
4-Her participation in the redemptive work of Christ: Mary, Mother of the Redeemer, by her intimate participation in the redeeming work of her Son, after the consummation of her earthly life, received the full fruit of redemption, which is the glorification of body and soul.
The Assumption is the victory of God confirmed in Mary and assured for us, the Assumption is a sign and promise of the glory that awaits us when at the end of the world our bodies resurrect and are reunited with our souls.
Your Body is Holy and Excelling in Splendor
From The Apostolic Constitution of Pope Pius XII on the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary
Taken from the Liturgy of the Hours from August 15 (AAS 42 [19501, 760-762. 767-769)
In their homilies and sermons on this feast the holy fathers and great doctors spoke of the assumption of the Mother of God as something already familiar and accepted by the faithful. They gave it greater clarity in their preaching and used more profound arguments in setting out its nature and meaning. Above all, they brought out more clearly the fact that what is commemorated in this feast is not simply the total absence of corruption from the dead body of the Blessed Virgin Mary but also her triumph over death and her glorification in heaven, after the pattern set by her only Son, Jesus Christ.
Thus Saint John Damascene, preeminent as the great preacher of this truth of tradition, speaks with powerful eloquence when he relates the bodily assumption of the loving Mother of God to her other gifts and privileges: “It was necessary that she who had preserved her virginity inviolate in childbirth should also have her body kept free from all corruption after death. It was necessary that she who had carried the Creator as a child on her breast should dwell in the tabernacles of God. It was necessary that the bride espoused by the Father should make her home in the bridal chambers of heaven. It was necessary that she, who had gazed on her crucified Son and been pierced in the heart by the sword of sorrow which she had escaped in giving him birth, should contemplate him seated with the Father. It was necessary that the Mother of God should share the possessions of her Son, and be venerated by every creature as the Mother and handmaid of God.”
Saint Germanus of Constantinople considered that it was in keeping not only with her divine motherhood but also with the unique sanctity of her virginal body that it was incorrupt and carried up to heaven: “In the words of Scripture, you appear in beauty. Your virginal body is entirely holy, entirely chaste, entirely the house of God, so that for this reason also it is henceforth a stranger to decay: a body changed, because a human body, to a preeminent life of incorruptibility, but still a living body, excelling in splendor, a body inviolate and sharing in the perfection of life.”
Another early author declares: “Therefore, as the most glorious Mother of Christ, our God and Savior, giver of life and immortality, she is enlivened by him to share an eternal incorruptibility of body with him who raised her from the tomb and took her up to himself in a way he alone can tell.”
All these reasonings and considerations of the holy Fathers rest on Scripture as their ultimate foundation. Scripture portrays the loving Mother of God, almost before our very eyes, as most intimately united with her divine Son and always sharing in his destiny.
Above all, it must be noted that from the second century the holy Fathers present the Virgin Mary as the new Eve, most closely associated with the new Adam, though subject to him in the struggle against the enemy from the nether world. This struggle, as the first promise of a redeemer implies, was to end in perfect victory over sin and death, always linked together in the writings of the Apostle of the Gentiles. Therefore, just as the glorious resurrection of Christ was an essential part of this victory and its final trophy, so the struggle shared by the Blessed Virgin and her Son was to end in glorification of her virginal body. As the same Apostle says: When this mortal body has clothed itself in immortality, then will be fulfilled the word of Scripture: Death is swallowed up in victory.
Hence, the august Mother of God, mysteriously united from all eternity with Jesus Christ in one and the same decree of predestination, immaculate in her conception, a virgin inviolate in her divine motherhood, the wholehearted companion of the divine Redeemer who won complete victory over sin and its consequences, gained at last the supreme crown of her privileges—to be preserved immune from the corruption of the tomb, and, like her Son, when death had been conquered, to be carried up body and soul to the exalted glory of heaven, there to sit in splendor at the right hand of her Son, the immortal King of the ages.
May the Mystery of the Assumption Illumine the Church and all of Humanity
H.H. Blessed John Paul II
August 15, 1995
Homily, Feast of the Assumption 15 August 1995
1. "A woman clothed with the sun".
On today's feast of the Assumption, the Church applies to Mary these words from the Revelation of St. John. In a certain sense, they tell us the end of the story of the "woman clothed with the sun": they speak to us of Mary assumed into heaven. Therefore, the liturgy rightly links them to the early part of Mary's history: the mystery of the Visitation in the house of St. Elizabeth. We know that the Visitation took place shortly after the Annunciation, as we read in the Gospel of St. Luke: "In those days Mary arose and went with haste into the hill country, to a city of Judah" (Lk 1:39).
According to a tradition this city was Ain-Karim. Having entered the house of Zechariah, Mary greeted Elizabeth. Did she want to tell her about what had happened to her, how she had agreed to the Angel Gabriel's proposal thus becoming, by the work of the Holy Spirit, Mother of the Son of God? Elizabeth however anticipated her and, under the action of the Holy Spirit, continued the greeting of the angelic messenger in her own words. If Gabriel had said: "Hail, full of grace, the Lord is with you" (Lk 1:28), Elizabeth, as if taking over from him, added: "Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb" (Lk 1:42). Thus between the Annunciation and the Visitation the most common Marian prayer, the "Hail Mary", came to be formed.
Dear brothers and sisters, today, the feast of the Assumption, the Church returns in thought to Nazareth, the site of the Annunciation; she travels in spirit to the threshold of Zechariahs' home in Ain-Karim and greets the Mother of God with the words: "Hail Mary!", and together with Elizabeth, she proclaims: "Blessed is she who believed that there would be a fulfillment of what was spoken to her from the Lord" (Lk 1:45). Mary believed with the faith of the Annunciation, with the faith of the Visitation, with the faith of the night of Bethlehem and of Christmas. Today she believes rather, now in the glory of heaven, she contemplates face to face the mystery of which her existence on earth was filled.
2. On the threshold of Zechariah's home, the Marian hymn of the Magnificat also came into being. The Church repeats it in today's liturgy, because Mary certainly and with even greater reason must have proclaimed it on her Assumption into heaven: "My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for he has regarded the low estate of his handmaiden. For behold, henceforth all generations will call me blessed, for he who is mighty has done great things for me, and holy is his name" (Lk 1:46-49).
Mary praises God and is praised by him. This praise has spread widely throughout the world. In fact, how many Marian shrines there are in every region of the earth dedicated to the mystery of the Assumption! It really would be difficult to list them all.
"Mary is taken up to heaven, and the angels of God shout for joy", proclaims today's liturgy in the Gospel acclamation. But men in every part of the world are also shouting for joy. And there are many nations that consider the Mother of God their Mother and Queen.
The mystery of the Assumption is in fact linked to that of her coronation as Queen of heaven and earth. "The princess is decked with gold-woven robes"—as the Responsorial Psalm of today's liturgy proclaims (Ps 44 :13)—to be raised up to the right hand of her Son: "On your right stands the queen in gold of Ophir" (refrain of the Responsorial Psalm).
3. The Assumption of Mary is a special sharing in Christ's Resurrection. In today's liturgy St. Paul emphasizes this truth, announcing the joy for the victor over death achieved by Christ through his Resurrection. "For he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet. The last enemy to be destroyed is death" (1 Cor 15:25-26). Victory over death, which became evident on the day of Christ's Resurrection, today concerns his Mother in a very special way. If death has no power over him—that is over the Son—neither has it any more power over his Mother, that is, over her who gave him earthly life.
In his first letter to the Corinthians, St. Paul as it were makes a profound comment on the mystery of the Assumption. He writes thus: "Christ has been raised from the dead, the first fruits of those who have fallen asleep. For as by a man came death, by a man has come also the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive. But each in his own order: Christ, the first fruits, then at his coming those who belong to Christ" (1 Cor 15:20-23). Mary is the first among "those who belong to Christ". In the mystery of the Assumption, Mary is the first to receive the glory; the Assumption represents as it were the culmination of the Easter mystery.
Christ rose again defeating death, the result of original sin, and with his victory he embraces all those who accept his Resurrection with faith. First of all, his Mother, freed from the inheritance of original sin by her Son's redemptive death on the cross. Today Christ embraces Mary, immaculate from her conception, receiving her into heaven in her glorified body, as if to hasten for her the day of his glorious return to earth, the day of the universal resurrection, awaited by humanity. The Assumption into heaven is like a great anticipation of the ultimate fulfillment of everything in God, in conformity with what the Apostle writes: "Then comes the end, when he [Christ] delivers the kingdom to God the Father ... that God may be everything to everyone" (1 Cor 15:24, 28). Is not God everything in her, the Immaculate Mother of the Redeemer?
I greet you, daughter of God the Father! I greet you, Mother of the Son of God! I greet you, mystical Spouse of the Holy Spirit! I greet you, Temple of the Holy Trinity!
4. "Then God's temple in heaven was opened, and the ark of his covenant was seen within his temple.... And a great portent appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars" (Rev 11:19; 12:1).
This vision in the Book of Revelation is considered, in a certain sense, as the last word in Mariology. However, the Assumption, which is magnificently expressed here, at the same time has its own ecclesiological meaning. It contemplates Mary not only as the Queen of all creation, but as the Mother of the Church. And as Mother of the Church, Mary assumed and crowned in heaven does not cease to be "involved" in the history of the Church, history of the struggle between good and evil. St. John wrote: "And another portent appeared in heaven; behold, a great red dragon" (Rev 12:3). This dragon is known by Sacred Scripture as the enemy of woman from the very first chapters of the Book of Genesis (cf. Gen 3:14). In the Book of Revelation the same dragon faces the woman who is about to give birth, ready to devour the child as soon as it is born (cf. Rev 12:4). We think spontaneously of the night of Bethlehem and of the threat to the life of the newborn Jesus as a result of the wicked edict of Herod who sent and "killed all the male children in Bethlehem and in all that region who were two years old or under" (Mt 2:16).
From the writings of the Second Vatican Council, the Mother of God's image emerges in a special way, deeply connected with the mystery of Christ and the Church. Mary, Mother of the Son of God, is at the same time Mother of all men who have become in the Son adopted children of the heavenly Father. It is precisely here that we see the constant struggle of the Church. Like a mother, and in likeness to Mary, the Church begets children to divine life, and her children, sons and daughters of the only-begotten Son of God, are constantly threatened by the hatred of the "red dragon": Satan.
While demonstrating the realism of this struggle which continues throughout history, the author of Revelation also stressed the perspective of the final victory by the Woman, by Mary who is our Advocate, who is the powerful ally of all the nations of the earth.
The author of Revelation speaks of this victory: "And I heard a loud voice in heaven, saying, 'Now the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God and the authority of his Christ have come'" (12:10).
The Solemnity of the Assumption puts before our eyes the reigning of our God and Christ's power over all creation.
5. Dear brothers and sisters, I would now like to address a cordial thought to all of you present here, parishioners of my Castel Gandolfo, parishioners of this parish where I become a fellow parishioner during the holidays. I affectionately greet Cardinal Angelo Sodano, my closest collaborator, titular Bishop of the Suburbicarian Church of Albano. I greet the Bishop of this diocesan community, dear Bishop Dante Bernini, who at this time is celebrating the 50th anniversary of his priestly ordination, his golden jubilee.
I am pleased to extend my sincere wishes to him, while thanking him for his zealous and generous episcopal service. Next I greet the parish priest, thanking him for his words to me at the beginning of this celebration. I also greet the Salesian superiors and priests, and the faithful of the parish of Castel Gandolfo, so dear to me.
Together let us praise the Mother of Christ and of the Church, together with all those who venerate her in every corner of the earth. How I wish that everywhere and in every language joy would be expressed for the Assumption of Mary! How I wish that this mystery would shed the brightest light on the Church and on humanity! May every man and every woman realize that they are called to share in the heavenly glory of their true Mother and Queen.
Every man and woman is called to share in this glory, as St. Irenaeus said: "Gloria Dei vivens homo; vita autem hominis visio Dei". These words express our personal vocation in the world and in the Church.
Praised be Jesus Christ!
The Assumption of Mary
Blessed John Paul II
July 9, 1997
The Church’s constant and unanimous Tradition shows how Mary’s Assumption is part of the divine plan and is rooted in her unique sharing in the mission of her Son.
The same ecclesial Tradition sees the fundamental reason for the Assumption in the divine motherhood. (…) It can therefore be said that the divine motherhood, which made Mary’s body the immaculate dwelling place of the Lord, was the basis of her glorious destiny.
John Paul II highlights that “According to some of the Church Fathers, another argument for the privilege of the Assumption is taken from Mary’s sharing in the work of Redemption.”
The Second Vatican Council, recalling the mystery of the Assumption in the Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, draws attention to the privilege of the Immaculate Conception: precisely because she was “preserved free from all stain of original sin” (Lumen gentium, n. 59), Mary could not remain like other human beings in the state of death until the end of the world. The absence of original sin and her perfect holiness from the very first moment of her existence required the full glorification of the body and soul of the Mother of God.
The Pope pointed out that “In the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin we can also see the divine will to advance woman. In a way analogous to what happened at the beginning of the human race and of salvation history, in God’s plan the eschatological ideal was not to be revealed in an individual, but in a couple. Thus in heavenly glory, beside the risen Christ there is a woman who has been raised up, Mary: the new Adam and the new Eve.”
To conclude, the Pope assured us that “In the face of the profanation and debasement to which modern society frequently subjects the female body, the mystery of the Assumption proclaims the supernatural destiny and dignity of every human body.”
In the Assumption, "Mary's Body, Woman's Body is Exalted"
Theologian Cettina Militello Explains Implications of This Truth of Faith
The Pope recalled the 50 year anniversary of the proclamation of the dogma of the Assumption, on November 1, 2000. Theologian Cettina Militello asserted at the first International Forum of Mariology in Rome that it is a truth of faith that has much to say to our culture.
"The unifying link between the dogma of the Assumption and the Jubilee is not accidental," Militello said. "1950, the year Pius XII proclaimed it, was a holy year. The apostolic constitution 'Munificentissmus Deus,' which proclaims this truth of faith, has a doxological tone; it is a hymn of praise to God for the wonders accomplished in Mary; and praise has a characteristically Jubilee dimension."
--Q: What can the Assumption express to contemporary man?
--Militello: In the context of the cultural transition in which we live, when contemporary man is faced increasingly with the search for meaning, I think the topic that must be stressed is that of corporeal nature. This dogma says that Mary's body, a woman's body, is exalted.
This is a paradoxical fact for us: In our culture, in fact, for a long time the feminine body has been the object of contempt. Instead, exalted in her assumption, Mary revolutionizes this idea: Our corporeal nature, no matter how sick, is called to transfiguration in God's plan.
--Q: So, Mary shows us what awaits us.
--Militello: Yes. However, it also says something about our condition today, about this body of ours, the place of relation with the other and with creation. At the root of the Assumption is the mystery of the Incarnation, which must be taken seriously.
If Christ became flesh, the corporeal dimension is not the same as before. The Risen One has already submerged us in a new reality, which leads us to interpret space and time differently. We are also called to experience sacramentally in relation to our body what has already been fulfilled in Mary.
--Q: What does Mary's body taken up to the heavens express about our final destiny?
--Militello: For us it is a horizon, a goal, a sign of hope. Mary shows us the fullness of the flesh; salvation is not a disembodied dimension. The images used in Scripture, the goods promised us, state this clearly. This is not the physics of ultimate realities; everything is enveloped in mystery. However, images like those of the Apocalypse -- the spouse, the banquet -- help us to intuit symbolically that the fullness will not be strictly spiritual.
--Q: Why is this dogma remembered precisely on the feast of All Saints?
--Militello: There is a profound link between Mary and the communion of saints. What we contemplate in the assumption as a "privilege" of the Mother of God, becomes a shared and common fact in the solemnity of All Saints. It is a plan that involves all the redeemed: those in heaven and, together with them, those who live in grace. In fact, the communion of saints is not just those who have preceded us. To use the classic definition, it also relates to the pilgrim Church, the one that lives in the world. Hence, the Assumption is the first, but not the only one. In the feast of All Saints we celebrate the co-participation in everything that [Mary] enjoys. Pius XII could absolutely have proclaimed this dogma on the day of the Assumption. Instead, by choosing the date Nov. 1, he gave this truth of faith an ecclesiological stamp.
Dormition of the Mother of God
Catechesis of H.H. John Paul II
June 25, 1997
The Pope recalled the words of the Second Vatican Council: “The Immaculate Virgin, preserved free from all guilt of original sin, on the completion of her earthly sojourn, was taken up body and soul into heavenly glory”
Mary and the human drama of death
With this formula, the Dogmatic Constitution Lumen gentium, following my Venerable Predecessor Pius XII, made no pronouncement on the question of Mary’s death…. a common tradition exists that sees in Mary’s death her entrance into celestial glory”.
Since Christ died, it would be difficult to maintain the contrary for his Mother….. Revelation death is presented as a punishment for sin. However, the fact that the Church proclaims Mary free from original sin by a unique divine privilege does not lead to the conclusion that she also received physical immortality. The Mother is not superior to the Son who underwent death, giving it a new meaning and changing it into a means of salvation.
Whatever from the physical point of view was the organic, biological cause of the end of her bodily life, it can be said that for Mary the passage from this life to the next was the full development of grace in glory, so that no death can ever be so fittingly described as a “dormition” as hers.
The Pope reminds us that “the New Testament provides no information on the circumstances of Mary’s death. This silence leads one to suppose that it happened naturally. It is more important to look for the Blessed Virgin’s spiritual attitude at the moment of her departure from this world. In this regard, St Francis de Sales maintains that Mary’s death was due to a transport of love. He speaks of a dying “in love, from love and through love”, going so far as to say that the Mother of God died of love for her Son Jesus.
Readings for the Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary
A Reading from the book of Revelation 11:19a; 12:1-6a, 10ab
God's temple in heaven was opened,
and the ark of his covenant could be seen in the temple.
A great sign appeared in the sky, a woman clothed with the sun,
with the moon under her feet,
and on her head a crown of twelve stars.
She was with child and wailed aloud in pain as she labored to give birth.
Then another sign appeared in the sky;
it was a huge red dragon, with seven heads and ten horns,
and on its heads were seven diadems.
Its tail swept away a third of the stars in the sky
and hurled them down to the earth.
Then the dragon stood before the woman about to give birth,
to devour her child when she gave birth.
She gave birth to a son, a male child,
destined to rule all the nations with an iron rod.
Her child was caught up to God and his throne.
The woman herself fled into the desert
where she had a place prepared by God.
Then I heard a loud voice in heaven say:
"Now have salvation and power come,
and the Kingdom of our God
and the authority of his Anointed One."
Responsorial Psalm Ps 45:10, 11, 12, 16
R. (10bc) The queen stands at your right hand, arrayed in gold.
The queen takes her place at your right hand in gold of Ophir.
R. The queen stands at your right hand, arrayed in gold.
Hear, O daughter, and see; turn your ear,
forget your people and your father's house.
R. The queen stands at your right hand, arrayed in gold.
So shall the king desire your beauty;
for he is your lord.
R. The queen stands at your right hand, arrayed in gold.
They are borne in with gladness and joy;
they enter the palace of the king.
R. The queen stands at your right hand, arrayed in gold.
A Reading From the Apstle Paul to the Corinthians 1 Cor 15:20-27
Brothers and sisters:
Christ has been raised from the dead,
the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep.
For since death came through man,
the resurrection of the dead came also through man.
For just as in Adam all die,
so too in Christ shall all be brought to life,
but each one in proper order:
Christ the first fruits;
then, at his coming, those who belong to Christ;
then comes the end,
when he hands over the Kingdom to his God and Father,
when he has destroyed every sovereignty
and every authority and power.
For he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet.
The last enemy to be destroyed is death,
for "he subjected everything under his feet."
“The Almighty has done great things for me”
Reading From the Holy Gospel According to Luke 1:39-56
Mary set out
and traveled to the hill country in haste
to a town of Judah,
where she entered the house of Zechariah
and greeted Elizabeth.
When Elizabeth heard Mary's greeting,
the infant leaped in her womb,
and Elizabeth, filled with the Holy Spirit,
cried out in a loud voice and said,
"Blessed are you among women,
and blessed is the fruit of your womb.
And how does this happen to me,
that the mother of my Lord should come to me?
For at the moment the sound of your greeting reached my ears,
the infant in my womb leaped for joy.
Blessed are you who believed
that what was spoken to you by the Lord
would be fulfilled."
And Mary said:
"My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord;
my spirit rejoices in God my Savior
for he has looked with favor on his lowly servant.
From this day all generations will call me blessed:
the Almighty has done great things for me
and holy is his Name.
He has mercy on those who fear him
in every generation.
He has shown the strength of his arm,
and has scattered the proud in their conceit.
He has cast down the mighty from their thrones,
and has lifted up the lowly.
He has filled the hungry with good things,
and the rich he has sent away empty.
He has come to the help of his servant Israel
for he has remembered his promise of mercy,
the promise he made to our fathers,
to Abraham and his children forever."
Mary remained with her about three months
and then returned to her home.
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
Today, we are celebrating the Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. This is an ancient feast deeply rooted in Sacred Scripture: indeed, it presents the Virgin Mary closely united to her divine Son and ever supportive of him.
Mother and Son appear closely bound in the fight against the infernal enemy until they completely defeat him. This victory is expressed in particular in overcoming sin and death, that is, in triumphing over the enemies which St Paul always presents as connected (cf. Rom 5: 12, 15-21; I Cor 15: 21-26).
Therefore, just as Christ's glorious Resurrection was the definitive sign of this victory, so Mary's glorification in her virginal body is the ultimate confirmation of her total solidarity with the Son, both in the conflict and in victory.
The Servant of God Pope Pius XII interpreted the deep theological meaning of this mystery on 1 November 1950 when he pronounced the solemn Dogmatic Definition of this Marian privilege.
He declared: "Hence, the revered Mother of God, from all eternity joined in a hidden way with Jesus Christ in one and the same decree of predestination, immaculate in her conception, a most perfect virgin in her divine motherhood, the noble associate of the divine Redeemer who has won a complete triumph over sin and its consequences, finally obtained, as the supreme culmination of her privileges, that she should be preserved free from the corruption of the tomb and that, like her own Son, having overcome death, she might be taken up body and soul to the glory of Heaven where, as Queen, she sits in splendour at the right hand of her Son, the immortal King of the Ages" (Apostolic Constitution Munificentissimus Deus: AAS 42, [1 November 1950]).
Dear brothers and sisters, after being taken up into Heaven, Mary did not distance herself from us but continues to be even closer to us and her light shines on our lives and on the history of all humanity. Attracted by the heavenly brightness of the Mother of the Redeemer, let us turn with trust to the One who looks upon us and protects us from on high.
We all need her help and comfort to face the trials and challenges of daily life; we need to feel that she is our mother and sister in the concrete situations of our lives.
And so that we too may one day be able to share in her same destiny, let us imitate her now in her meek following of Christ and her generous service to the brethren. This is the only way to have a foretaste, already on our earthly pilgrimage, of the joy and peace which those who reach the immortal destination of Paradise live to the full.