Year B, The Solemnity of the Assumption of Mary
(Mass During the Day)

"My Soul Proclaims the Greatness of the Lord"

August 15, 2000


Ronald D. Curley

TEXT: The Holy Gospel According to Saint Luke 1: 39-56

It was the practice of Mary, when a need arose, to be available to help. Thus we sense the virtue of our Sanctissima, as we read this passage that shows her coming to the help of Elizabeth.

Mary is the Help of Christians.

39 In those days Mary arose and went with haste into the hill country, to a city of Judah,

40 and she entered the house of Zechariah and greeted Elizabeth.

It would be Elizabeth who would give us the first insight into the blessedness of Mary.

41 And when Elizabeth heard the greeting of Mary, the babe leaped in her womb; and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit

42 and she exclaimed with a loud cry, "Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb!

How this speaks to us, this idea of a babe (John the Baptist) leeping in the womb of Elizabeth upon hearing the greeting of Mary. Two others were present besides Elizabeth and Mary - Jesus and John !

Here, Mary's obedience to the movement of the Holy Spirit brings her to meet Elizabeth and John. Even now Jesus and Mary work together in a unique manner only present in Mary's womb.

This brings forth the exultation of Elizabeth, who filled with the Holy Spirit says -- "Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb!"

Only fully know unto God and the Blessed Virgin are these things that transpired, but we know Mary kept these matters in her heart until she shared them with Luke (cf. Mary of Agreda, "The Mystical City of God")

Elizabeth continues -

43 And why is this granted me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me?

44 For behold, when the voice of your greeting came to my ears, the babe in my womb leaped for joy.

45 And blessed is she who believed that there would be a fulfillment of what was spoken to her from the Lord."

There was a greater fulfillment than is mention that would come to be for Mary.

"Blessed is she who believed..."

Mary believed the Word of God.

Jesus said in Luke 11 -- "Blessed rather are those who hear the word of God and keep it!"

Indeed, blessed are we if we believe the Word of God and keep it like Mary!

Thus Mary can say what we ought to be able to say daily as we follow Mary's supreme example of faith and keeping the Word of God --

46 And Mary said, "My soul magnifies the Lord,

47 and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,

48 for he has regarded the low estate of his handmaiden...,"

But, there is a greater work for Mary to come and a greater blessing from God!

"...For behold, henceforth all generations will call me blessed;

49 for he who is mighty has done great things for me, and holy is his name.

Saint John of Damascus (8th century) said -

"It was fitting that God's Mother should possess what belongs to her Son, and that she should be honored by every creature as the Mother and as the Handmaid of God." ("Homily on the Assumption," 14)

There in Heaven, Mary assumed into Heaven looks upon her Son in adoration. Therefore, Jesus honors his Mother.

This proclaims what he has in store for those who also love him as she does.

50 And his mercy is on those who fear him from generation to generation.


She is the Mother of Mercy, thus, she cares for the remnant of her seed with us in the wilderness (cf. Revelation 12)

51 He has shown strength with his arm, he has scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts,

52 he has put down the mighty from their thrones, and exalted those of low degree;

Thus, it is so when the kingdoms of this world will fall and the kingdom of God will overcome Satan and all the enemies of God forever at his Parousia. (cf. Revelation 19)

53 he has filled the hungry with good things, and the rich he has sent empty away.

54 He has helped his servant Israel, in remembrance of his mercy,

55 as he spoke to our fathers, to Abraham and to his posterity for ever."

Thanks be to God. "Mary hath been taken to Heaven; the angels rejoice; they praise and bless the Lord." (Roman Breviary, "Antiphon at Lauds for the Feast," 7th century)

56 And Mary remained with her about three months, and returned to her home.

Now, as did Mary, we too must remain before we return to our homes.

We must wait and be a help to one another, like Mary.

The time is short.

The clouds gather.

Mary is assumed into Heaven, the angels rejoice.

Now, we wait for the day when we shall be presented to Christ as well, like the chaste virgin St. Paul desires that we be for Christ.

Let us occupy until he comes for us.

Grace and peace.

Deus et Sanctissima.

To order the weekly homily immediately, click here