Father Michael Barrow

From the parish of St Francis of Assisi

In Celebrating The Assumption of Our Lady: A Reflection By Fr.Michael Barrow,S.J.

In Celebrating The Assumption of Our Lady: A Reflection By Fr.Michael Barrow,S.J.

IN CELEBRATING THE ASSUMPTION OF OUR LADY we are celebrating the fact that Jesus has put an end to death. Dying is not the end of everything but the beginning of a wonderful life. After Mary had come to the end her life on earth her body was taken up to heaven and became alive again. What makes this so significant is not just what happened to Mary. The fact that she is alive physically instead of just being spiritual without the body, helps us to realise that one day we too will be alive physically. Our bodies may corrupt in the grave or be cremated but one day like Mary we will be alive again physically with a body that you can see and recognise and hug and speak to.

Pope Francis calls Our Lady the Mother of Hope. Even though she had so many tragedies in her life she could always say, "My soul glorifies the Lord and my spirit rejoices in God my Saviour." Even after the anxiety of losing her child and spending three days searching for him not knowing if she would see him alive again, she did not lose hope. As St Elizabeth said, "She believed that the promise made to her by the Lord would be fulfilled." Even after the experience of seeing the people of Nazareth itself trying to lynch her son, she did not lose hope.Even after this seeing Jesus her son, her little boy, murdered in such a terrible way, she knew that this was not the end.

Now she is united with him for ever.The Celtic poet Blathmhac (c. 750) tells that when our Lord had returned to heaven and "when the household of heaven welcomed their true heart, Mary, your beautiful Son broke down in tears in their presence." In heaven we won't cease to be human.

On this great feast day, let us ask Mary to obtain for us that wonderful gift of hope, that we may believe that the promises made to us will be fulfilled and that one day we will be united with her and with Christ and with those whom we love who have gone to God before us...

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