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Monday 03 October |
Saint of the Day: St. Theodora Guerin
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And today we celebrate...Saint of the Day

The Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Sharing Fully in the Lord’s Victory

SOLEMNITY

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The meaning of the celebration

+ On this day, the Church solemnly celebrates the Paschal mystery of Christ in a special way as she recalls the unique relationship between the Virgin Mary and her Son and the truth that, at the completion of her earthly life, Mary was taken into heaven, body and soul.

+ The Solemnity of the Assumption is the celebration of the eternal happiness and glory that all the faithful are called to share and which we believe will be ours in the Kingdom of Heaven.

+ August 15 also marks the feast of Our Lady of La Vang, the name given to an apparition of the Blessed Virgin Mary in 1798 to a group of Vietnamese Catholics who had taken refuge in the rainforest of La Vang in Quang Tri Province, Vietnam. Although the apparition has not been approved by the Holy See, the comfort and encouragement Our Lady provided during the apparition has become a source of great courage and consolation for Vietnamese Catholics throughout the world.

For prayer and reflection

The solemnity of August 15 celebrates the glorious Assumption of Mary into heaven. It is a feast of her destiny of fullness and blessedness, of the glorification of her immaculate soul and of her virginal body, of her perfect configuration to the Risen Christ; a feast that sets before the eyes of the Church and of all mankind the image and the consoling proof of the fulfillment of their final hope, namely, that this full glorification is the destiny of all those whom Christ has made His brothers, having ‘flesh and blood in common with them’ (Heb. 2:14; cf. Gal. 4:4).”—Pope Saint Paul VI in Marialis Cultus

Spiritual bonus

On August 15 we also remember Blessed Isidore Bakanja. Born in Congo Free State (now the Democratic Republic of Congo), Isidore became a Christian as a teenager. A devout young man and catechist, he had a great devotion to the rosary and the brown scapular. While working on a rubber plantation, his Belgian employers ordered him to remove the scapular. When Isidore refused, he was mercilessly beaten and chained. The wounds became infected and after a painful final illness, Isidore died on August 15, 1909, at the age of twenty-one or twenty-two. Having forgiven the supervisor who beat him, Isidore told the plantation inspector, “Tell them I am dying because I am a Christian.” Blessed Isidore Bakanja was beatified in 1994.

Vocations

Several communities of men and women religious are named for the mystery of the Assumption. To learn more, visit the links below.

For men:

The Benedictine Monks of Assumption Abbey (Richardton, ND): www.assumptionabbey.com

The Trappist Monks of Assumption Abbey (Ava, MO): www.assumptionabbey.org

The Assumptionists (Augustinians of the Assumption): www.assumption.us

For women:

Religious of the Assumption: www.assumptionsisters.org

Little Sisters of the Assumption: www.littlesisters.org

Carmel of the Assumption (Latrobe, PA): www.latrobecarmel.org

Prayer

Almighty ever-living God,
who assumed the Immaculate Virgin Mary, the Mother of your Son,
body and soul into heavenly glory,
grant, we pray,
that, always attentive to the things that are above,
we may merit to be sharers of her glory.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
God, for ever and ever. Amen.

(from The Roman Missal)

Saint profiles prepared by Brother Silas Henderson, S.D.S.

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