It is sometimes difficult to understand and believe doctrines that do not have concrete biblical supports, but as Catholics, we have come to learn and understand that, the Church is built on sacred scripture and sacred tradition that do not go against scriptural teaching.
One of such sacred traditions is the dogma of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. This belief traces its roots back to the earliest years of the Church. According to St. John of Damascus, in the 5th century, at the Council of Chalcedon in 451, Roman Emperor Marcian requested the body of Mary, Mother of God and St. Juvenal, who was Bishop of Jerusalem replied “that Mary died in the presence of all the Apostles, but that her tomb, when opened upon the request of St. Thomas, was found empty; wherefrom the Apostles concluded that the body was taken up to heaven,”. In addition to that, we hear that there were fresh roses growing where she was laid.
In 1950, November 1, Pope Pius XII made an infallible, ex-cathedra statement in the Apostolic Constitution Munificentissimus Deus officially defining the dogma of the Assumption and it stated as; “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,”
How is this possible, one may ask.
On 5th of August 2017, I was most privileged and honored to be part of a women’s conference dubbed “WOMEN WITHOUT LIMITS” and there’s never been anything like it. But it was quite unfortunate that I had to leave before the close of the program but that wasn’t without some goodies, and these goodies came in a very cute paper bag. I looked at the bag, looked at the goodies and what I wanted most was the bag not the goodies.
I know and you’ll agree with me that I am not the only one who has had such feelings for cute, nice and very attractive bags and containers that come with products we purchase. In most of our homes, we have a place, a bag or a container where we keep polythene bags that we got from buying stuff.
Why do we keep these nice and very attractive bags even after we’ve gotten what we wanted from them? Why do we keep the polythene bags after they’ve been used? I can say we keep them mostly for decoration and reuse. Emphasis on the word REUSE.
In explaining how it is possible for our Mother Mary to have been born pure and assumed into heaven, we can take a cue from the common experience with nice packages of bags stated above.
If you will want to keep a bag meant to package a product for decoration and reuse simply because they’re so cute, nice and very attractive, how much more keeping the Immaculate body of a woman who served as a “container”, “an attractive paper bag”, a “cute package,” a vessel of God for conception of the Begotten Son, who brought salvation to the world?
We have all heard stories of the Mother Mary reveling herself to earthly people and notable amongst them is Our Lady of Fatima. I dare to say that these revelations are possible because she as assumed body and soul into heavenly glory.