Mary's Most Loyal Children

The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, a solemn feast day and a holy day of obligation that we celebrate each year on August 15th, is the Church’s most ancient Marian feast. Christians living in Jerusalem celebrated the “dormition of Mary” (Mary’s going to sleep) from at least the third century—gathering in Palestine to remember the Mother of God, and to honor her as queen of heaven and earth. Continue Reading »

The Virgin Mary’s Spiritual Lessons

I love the Feast of the Assumption. The readings for the day include a dragon ready to devour the son of the sun-clothed Queen of Heaven. And then there is the magnificat, the Virgin Mary’s hymn of thanksgiving and praise: “My soul doth magnify the Lord; and my spirit hath rejoiced in God my savior.” … Continue Reading »

What the Assumption Means

As a small contribution to ecumenical understanding, on this sixtieth anniversary of the promulgation of the doctrine of the Assumption in  Munificentissimus Deus, here is a section from my book Discovering Mary explaining what the pope said in defining it. It is, let me stress, only a “just . . . . Continue Reading »