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Life of a Saint

The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of Jesus Christ

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As Mother of Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, the Blessed Virgin Mary is venerated, worshipped, and respected throughout many of the world’s religions. She is considered the most meritorious Saint of Christianity. Many believers over the centuries have reported a Marian apparition, or a supernatural appearance by the Blessed Virgin Mary. In Islam, Mary is held to an exalted position and is the only woman named in the Holy Quran. The nineteenth chapter of the Quran is, in fact, devoted to and named after Mary. One of the holy days that honors the Blessed Virgin Mary and helps us to understand her noble life is the “Assumption of Mary,” also known as the “Dormition of the Virgin Mary” and the “Feast of the Assumption of Mary.” The Assumption of Mary is usually celebrated on August 15th.

It is understood that Lord Jesus Christ, who loved His Mother dearly, chose to take or assume Her body and soul to Heaven once She had completed Her earthly life. The Blessed Virgin Mary thus shared in Her Son’s glory and living as Queen in the great Kingdom of Heaven. The Assumption of Mary is the church’s celebration of Mary’s heavenly birthday, and commemorates Her assumption into Heaven.

The Assumption of Mary is celebrated in many countries, especially in Europe and Latin America. The Assumption is commemorated with firework displays and colorful processions. In Sicily, it is a bowing procession, and the people carry a statue of the Blessed Virgin Mary through town to a ceremonial arch of flowers where a group of people hold a statue of Lord Jesus Christ.

The Blessed Virgin Mary has been a patron Saint in France since 1638, and many Catholics in France attend special church services and celebrations. In São Paulo and other parts of Southern Brazil, this holy day is called Nossa Senhora dos Navegantes, or“Our Lady of the Navigators.”Decorated canoes travel to small villages for entertainment and feasting.

According to Pope Benedict XVI:“By contemplating Mary in heavenly glory, we understand that the earth is not the definitive homeland for us either, and that if we live with our gaze fixed on eternal goods we will one day share in this same glory and the earth will become more beautiful.”

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