Friday, August 19, 2011

A Reason to be Joyful

The Byzantine tradition celebrates an octave of the Dormition of the Theotokos (i.e. the Assumption). So today is the Fourth Day of the Celebration of the Dormition. Let us then continue to keep in our hearts the hymn of the Feast:

"You were a Mother, and yet remained a Virgin; you went up to heaven, and yet did not forsake the world, O Mother of God. You have passed to life, being the Mother of Life. Through your intercession, save our souls from death."

There is some echo of this in the current Roman calendar, in that the eight day after the Assumption is the feast of the Queenship of Mary (August 22).

So I like to think that we are in a "Marian Season." The light of Mary's Assumption and her taking up in its fullness the role of Mother of the whole human race shines through in these days.

This brings hope and strength even in the midst of trials and affliction. It reminds us that we have reason to be joyful in heart. Mary is real and alive and cares about each of us personally. She loves us. She carries us especially in those places where we are most fragile.