Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Catholic Reflections 684 : THE ASSUMPTION OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY, AUGUST 15TH, 2018

Homily THE ASSUMPTION OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY, AUGUST 15TH, 2018

THE LITURGY OF THE WORD


First Reading: Revelation 11:19; 12:1-6. 10
Psalm: Ps 44:10-12. 16.”The queen stands at your right hand, arrayed in gold.”
Second Reading: 1 Corinthians 15:20-26Gospel: Luke 1:39-56



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Please listen to my audio recordings of the readings, prayers and reflections for THE ASSUMPTION OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY, AUGUST 15TH, 2018, by clicking this link here: https://soundcloud.com/user-633212303/assumption-feast-15-aug-2018-faith-hope-and-love-ep-111  episode 111
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[“This feast originated in Jerusalem before the fifth century as the "Falling-Asleep of the Mother of God." It was adopted in Rome in the mid-seventh century and was renamed the "Assumption" in the next century. It celebrates Mary's passing over, body and soul, from this world into the glory of her risen Son.  Christ’s resurrection and Ascension is the first-fruits and foretaste of the destiny of all who trust in his promises and Mary is the first of many who will share in Christ’s resurrection,  body and soul.  ]

As with all saints in the Church calendar, this feast of the Assumption into heaven of the Blessed Virgin Mary is first and foremost about the victory of God the Son over death….  His incarnate love, his death and resurrection and ascension body and soul into heaven is the firsfruits of what he won for all who trust in his promises…It is perfectly fitting that Mary, so faithful and so instrumental in God’s plan of salvation should be the first to benefit, after Christ, her son, of being taken into heaven body and soul.  Where Christ has gone, we hope to follow. Where Mary has Gone, Christ promises to deliver us too at the resurrection.

Mary bore the light of Christ to the world… and in so many ways, big and small, Mary was a light of encouragement, grace, love and faith, to all she met… (in our own way, we receive the light of Christ by faith and baptism… we carry it and .. through our actions.. we show that light in our lives….

There is a beautiful prayer..  called the Litany of the blessed Virgin mary…  it lists some of the wonderful titles  such as (for example),..
Mother of God,
Mother of Christ,
Mother of divine grace,
Virgin most faithful,
Mirror of justice,
Seat of wisdom,
Cause of our joy,
Spiritual vessel,
Ark of the covenant,
Health of the sick,
Refuge of sinners,
Comforter of the afflicted,
Help of Christians,
Queen of Prophets,
Queen of Apostles,
….assumed into Heaven,
Queen of the most holy rosary,
Queen of Peace.


These and many more titles capture the qualities that make Mary so admirable…. And they all refer to her cooperation and reception of God’s gracious action…..  putting her life at the service of God’s plan for the world………….

The Assumption is a beautiful echo of the Ascension of our Lord into Heaven….  Jesus Ascended into Heaven, to return to his rightful place at the right hand of the Father….  He returned from where he had come…..  Mary, because of her absolute faithfulness, was given the blessing of being the first person to benefit fully from the promise made by Jesus Ascension…  that on the last day, we will be in Heaven with God, body, and soul…..  Mary received this promise immediately at the end of her life…..  what happened to Mary, we hope will be given to us at the resurrection on the last day……

Mary is an ideal example of someone who cooperated with God’s plans… and as a result allowed God to do great things through her life and actions….//  .  and Look at the wonders the Holy Spirit of God can achieve when we are open to God’s plan in our lives….


Look at the incredible grace, love and fruit that is produced by saying “YES” to what God wants to achieve through us in the world…..


Mary stands as an incredible inspiration of human faithfulness, obedience, respect and humility….  Mary’s YES, allowed her to become a willing part of God’s plan in the world…..

Let us never say,  “what can I contribute….  what good is what I have to give, compared with the enormity of the needs, the challenges… and the demands of this world….”  rather…. like Mary, may we be further inspired to say… yes, Lord…..  you are great and good…… you can achieve all things (and a significant part of what God achieves, is also “in and through” the people God has invited to cooperate in God’s work……….

 Mary TRUSTED IN God, but not by quietly sitting and waiting…  Mary was active and compassionate…..  She rushed off to help her cousin Elizabeth… she  saw a problem at the Wedding in Cana and took action to help by asking her son to assist…..  Mary was present at different parts of Jesus preaching…  and was there for him at the foot of the cross…. Mary was there praying with the Apostles in their time of doubt and was there to receive the Holy Spirit at Pentecost.……..

Mary is like…. (we are all like)  a writing instrument in the hand of our most artistic God……  if we allow ourselves to be the channel through which God’s good news, love, justice and forgiveness is experienced…


“Wouldn’t it be great to be a clear mirror of the graciousness, peace and love of Christ….  whenever we do act or speak in ways that allows Jesus’ message to flow through us, it is an enormous source of blessing and good…..  Sadly sometimes, because we experience limitations, weakness and fragility…. we can block that graciousness and our actions and values can block the healing, the care and the compassion that God is trying to create in and through us…..  Let us pray that Jesus will show us how to allow ourselves to be more and more the light of Christ to each other  and to all….


May Mary, who shows us an openness and generosity to God….. and pre-figures the destiny of all who hope in Jesus’ promises, continue to inspire us to make a difference….  and say “yes” to God’s values in all we do, in the church, in the community, and in our homes and social situations…..

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References:
Fr Paul W. Kelly

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“Faith, Hope and Love,  A time of Christian worship and reflection”  - Led by Rev Paul W. Kelly
Texts used in this programme are for the purposes of worship and prayer for listeners wherever you are.
Prayers and chants are taken from the English Translation of the Roman Missal, edition three, © 2010, The International commission on English in the liturgy.
Scriptures are from the New Revised Standard Version: © 1989,  by the national council of Churches of Christ, USA. , //adaptations to conform with Catholic liturgical norms, © 2009, by the same.
 [{selected psalms } - ***Psalm verses are (also) taken from “The Psalms: A New Translation” ©1963, The Grail (England), published by Collins.. **]

Prayers of the Faithful are adapted from Robert Borg’s 1993 book “ Together we pray”. Published in Sydney Australia By  E.J. Dwyer. (out of print).

{ “Mass In Honour of St. Ralph Sherwin” -published 2011,  Composed and Sung by Jeffrey M. Ostrowski
Featuring the….Gloria: 
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“Faith, Hope and Love” theme Hymn:  Words, based on 1 Corinthians 13:1-13, set to original music © 1996 by Paul W. Kelly.

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May God bless and keep you.

Homily THE ASSUMPTION OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY, AUGUST 15TH, 2018
Episode 111.

The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you all.
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Brothers and sisters, let us acknowledge our sins,
and so prepare ourselves to celebrate the sacred mysteries.
Lord Jesus, you are mighty God and Prince of peace. Lord have mercy//  You are Son of God and the Son of Mary. Christ have mercy// You are Word made flesh, the splendour of the Father. Lord have mercy.
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Gloria
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CREED
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Memorial Acclamation

We proclaim your Death, O Lord, and profess your Resurrection until you come again.

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Preparation of the Gifts
Blessed are you, Lord God of all creation, for through your goodness we have received the bread we offer you: fruit of the earth and work of human hands, it will become for us the bread of life.
       Blessed be God for ever.

Blessed are you, Lord God of all creation, for through your goodness we have received the wine we offer you: fruit of the vine and work of human hands, it will become our spiritual drink.
       Blessed be God forever.
Pray, brothers and sisters, that my sacrifice and yours may be acceptable to God,
the almighty Father.
  May the Lord accept the sacrifice at your hands, for the praise and glory of his name, for our good and the good of all his holy Church.

Preface of the Assumption

ep ii

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Go and announce the Gospel of the Lord.

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