The Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary
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By Fr. ALFONSE NAZZARO
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 woman, 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.”
How could this be? What I find most interesting about Mary’s Assumption is not the fact of her assumption but the how of her assumption. How did she do it? With God’s grace, of course, but also through the manner in which she lived her life. Mary reached the greatest heights by submerging herself into the greatest depths of humility. She became the “incarnation” of meekness and holiness and of faith, hope and love.
Her assumption is God’s reward for a life lived in utter obscurity. This fact is what I find most shocking and astonishing and most lacking when it comes to defining a successful life.
Mary’s assumption into heaven is no less believable than a poor man becoming a rich man, or a homeless man becoming a real estate tycoon. What makes their stories fascinating is how they did it. But what makes their stories enriching and rewarding and eternal is how they did it.
Humility takes humanity a long way…all the way to heaven!
Yesterday evening I found myself fascinated by the story of a 20-year-old aspiring model who is currently competing for the title of “America’s next top model.” What makes her story worth repeating is the fact that she has vitiligo, a skin condition which causes white patches to appear all over her body.
As a child, Chantelle Brown-Young was bullied in school: “I was called a cow; I was moo-ed at; I was called Zebra.” The bullying got so bad she had to withdraw from High School.
But one day, at the age of sixteen, a female photographer noticed her on Facebook and invited her to her studio. “She had found me on Facebook and she fell in love with my skin and my energy in pictures so she decided she wanted to do a photo shoot with me.” From that moment, her passion for modeling took off. Today, four years later, her unique look has landed her a spot as a contestant on “America’s Next Top Model’s.”
Who would have thought that this girl, once bullied for her looks, would one day be considered a supermodel?
Who would have thought that a humble girl, from a humble village, would one day be “blessed among women” and assumed into heaven?
“Nothing is impossible with God” (Cf. Lk 1:37).
Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee. Blessed art thou among woman, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus.
Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now, and at the hour of our death. Amen. (0)
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