A Shabbas and Feastday Table: "Assuming" Joy

Today is the feastday of the Assumption of the Blessed Mother...though in my head i kept misakenly thinking today was St Helena's feastdayfor some reason, go figure.

But it really is a beautiful feastday today! Such a deep one. Tea at Trianon had this wonderful reflection:

On November 1, 1950, Pope Pius XII in the bull Munificentissimus Deus defined the dogma of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. The teaching that the Immaculate Mother of God was taken body and soul into heaven at the close of her earthly existence has been the constant belief of the universal Church, as ancient liturgical manuscripts bear witness. "Everything tends to indicate that the privilege of the Assumption was explicitly revealed to the Apostles...and that it was transmitted subsequently by the oral tradition of the Liturgy," wrote Fr. Reginald Garrigou-Lagrange in The Mother of the Saviour and Interior Life.

It was not until the middle of the twentieth century, a century so traumatized by genocide, mass murders, world wars, the breakdown of modesty, morality, and family life; the spread of false ideologies such as communism, socialism, and feminism, which promise to liberate but in reality only enslave and destroy, that the pope was moved to declare the dogma. "The political, social, and religious atmosphere in the middle of the twentieth century influenced greatly the decision of the Pope" so that "mindful of the human misery caused by war, of the ever present threat of materialism and the decline of moral life, and of the internal problems that disturbed the Church, [he] turned to Mary, confident of her intercession." Pope Pius XII "believed...that calling attention to the bodily Assumption of Mary would remind all men and women that the human body is sacred, that the whole person is holy and destined to live forever." (Fr. Kilian Healy, O.Carm. The Assumption of Mary)

For those who struggle to offer to God hearts free from all stain of actual sin, who strive to experience even in this life the joys of union with God through contemplation, the mystery of the Assumption is one which characterizes a way of life.

I really love that...the mystery of the Assumption is one which characterizes a way of life. Talk about "not a desert but an ocean" : )

I was thinking on this passage as i was doing the dishes earlier. Its been a challenging day here, really really hot and expected to be heavy and wind-less tonight and mega hot again tomarrow. Coupled with financial issues and health issues that are really up right now, ive been pretty stressed. But as i was standing there doing the dishes, it was weird, but i "caught" myself being happy. Hard to describe. It was like i was watching my own heart and thinking, "hey, i shouldnt be happy", like i had caught myself doing something wrong. It only lasted a second. But i saw just how insane that was.... happiness bubbles up...and i squish it, like its some sort of sacriledge to be happy when stressful things are happening.

And it got me thinking about this "assumption as a way of life" idea. Maybe choosing joy is how we can turn there really, "looking up" in the deepest sense. It seems like such an act of rebellion and defiance almost, allowing joy when there is so much stress, and so much evil, around us. But maybe thats the whole point....this not losing hope. Mary never lost hope, and she had every reason to when her Son was crucified. Really, she had every reason to even as a young girl just seeing the horrific state of the world around her. But she truly truly hoped. And just look what happened.

Hope doesnt mean you ignore problems...when one is hopeful one hopes for solutions, or reaches out in their own way. Hope is trust after all, and trust opens the heart. But even admitting problems are there and longing for their healing, this longing can still be lived with joy. Joy that comes from hope and trust....or rather faith hope and trust as Peter Pan would say, smile. That story actually really comes to mind....it wasnt until they had that "faith hope and trust" that they could fly. Maybe a hopeful joy really is behind assumption as a way of life. I don't know, something about that just won't let go today. Really, don't even the images of Our Blessed Mother below (will be inserted later, blogger wont let me now) look an awful lot like the ultimate in "faith hope and trust"? To say the least : )

I know we can never be Mary, or hope for her Sacred Assumption of course....but we can still long to be like her, like a daughter longs to be like her Mother : ) An "assumption way of life" just sounds so amazing.

Well, Blessed Feastday Everyone...and a Blessed Shabbat and Sabbath too : )

(Images from here, here and here)

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