Masses on Tuesday, August 15,
at 7:00, 7:45, 8:30, 11:30 AM;
12:15, 1:15, 4:30 and 5:30 PM
The roots of the feast:
The roots of this week’s feast of the Assumption can be traced back at least to the fifth century, when it is noted in the Armenian lectionary. Celebrated in Jerusalem, the feast in honor of the Theotokos, the Mother of God, became the principal feast of Mary throughout the Christian world. The place of celebration was at the tomb of Mary in Gethsemane and was therefore known as the “Dormition of Mary.” In some cultures this feast is celebrated today with a resting statue of Mary, much like a wake service of modern times.
The liturgy of this feast provides images of “the place of your rest” in Psalm 132, and reverence for the Ark of the Covenant that held the signs of the Promise. Like that Ark, Mary is for us the ark of the Savior, the one who bore the Son of God. When the doctrine of the Assumption was defined in 1950 the Gospel reading for the feast was changed to include the verses of Mary’s song, the Magnificat.
The scripture readings for both the vigil Mass and the Mass of the day speak to us of life after death as well as the path to be followed in order to reach it. The key to this promised immortality is found as we take to heart the words of the vigil’s Gospel, “Blessed are those who hear the word of God and observe it.” —James Field
On November 1, 1950, Pope Pius XII solemnly declared: “By the authority of our Lord Jesus Christ, of the Blessed Apostles Peter and Paul, and by our own authority, we pronounce, declare, and define it to be a divinely revealed dogma: that the Immaculate Mother of God, the ever Virgin Mary, having completed the course of her earthly life, was assumed body and soul into heavenly glory” (Munificentissimus Deus, 44)