Assumption: An Act of Faith
A guest once visited a Salesian house. She came down the car and surveying the house before her, sighed as a sign of relief after hours of travelling. Not wanting to carry her heavy baggage to her room, and besides no priest was present to meet and greet her, she called out to the old man working and bent over the flower bed in the garden. The old man who was in working clothes kindly obliged to carry her heavy bags up the flight of stairs and guided the woman to her room.
“What’s your name again, kuya?”, asked the woman.
“I’m Fr. Sami Ghouri, the rector of this house.”
We could imagine the woman, blushing and ashamed of herself. All too often, our Salesians are unassuming and hardworking, sometimes you cannot really tell who is one when we are at work. We love to dirty our hands at work. The woman for her part, was just assuming he was the gardener.
Dear, fathers and brothers, I stand before you this morning wondering why we have to “Assume” that our Blessed Mother is taken up to heaven. Why can’t be so sure? Why the lack of certainty? In this first day of the Triduum in honor the Assumption of Our Blessed Mother, when she was assumed body and soul into heaven, let me share my following reflections.
First and foremost, I would say that the Assumption is the most logical way we can imagine that the Blessed Mother would be treated by her Son after her earthly life. If Reverend Jacinto Gusmao were to be ordained this morning, we would expect his mother to sit in the front seat crying her eyes out because of pride and unbelief that her son has finally become a priest. Brothers, the assumption is not just a logical consequence but a natural expression of filial love that the Son could give to His mother.
I love to watch Crime Scene Investigation or CSI because it is exciting to see characters trying to solve mysteries and crime problems. If they were present immediately after the event of the Assumption, I think they would conclude that Mary would never have died – there is no dead body to act as evidence. If they were also to collect all the supposedly Marian relics today, I think there would be more body parts and personal effects for them to examine for a lifetime. The Assumption, and this is my second point, is not a scientific finding nor a philosophical assent. Rather, it is an act of faith both on the Christian community and of our Blessed Mother. Without evidence, the apostles and the first Christians submitted themselves to their faith. Without knowing the plan, the Blessed Mother allowed herself to be taken by God.
So I end this reflection, with a challenge for you and me. We all know the Dogma of the Assumption and no one here is excited to hear it read again. But does our knowledge of such a mystery lead us to an assent and ascent of faith? Is our devotion to our Blessed Mother a natural expression of love, from sons to a mother? Do we have a faith that firmly believes that we have a mother in heaven who was assumed into heaven because she has faith and because of her faith? Will our faith assume us into heaven, too?
As we move closer to the Feast of the Assumption, we continue to entrust ourselves to our blessed mother. Mary Immaculate, Assumed into heaven, pray for us.