|Do you believe in the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary? |
|Yes: The Church teaches it, and it makes sense||243||92.75%|
|No, No way, if it's not spelled out in the bible then...||9||3.44%|
|Not sure: Let's talk about this.||10||3.82%|
To me, the Assumption is easy to believe in. If you check the OT you see that it happened back then too. Enoch, Moses, and Elijah were all taken up by God because of who they were in His plan and their faithfulness to Him and though the NT gives us nothing to go on on this event, there are non-canonical early church writings that do suggest that our Lord took the Blessed Virgin as well. This makes perfect sense to me for several reasons.
1. Mary was Jesus mother and He surely loves her just as any of us love our own and would do everything He can to display that love.
2. Jesus would no doubt protect his mother from the terrible persecutions that followed. You will notice that there is no record of Mary's death or where she went after the day of Pentecost, though we do know that she went home to live with St. John after Our Lord's death right? We know that St. John was the last of the apostles to die and that at one point he was miraculously saved by God when being boiled in oil for his faith...yet he never mentions Mary in his letters but there's just no way that he wouldn't have known her fate...that just doesn't make any sense.
I think that the NT is so silent about the Blessed Virgin because they all agreed to protect her. Can you imagine the PR blitz that would've occurred if the Jews or Romans could have found and tortured and killed the mother of this Jesus? Whew!
3. Since God did some really amazing things with the early church, like snatching St. Stephen away to Azotus after he baptized the Ethiopian Eunuch in Acts, it seems logical to me that God did some amazing things for the woman who said yes to bearing His only Son. My friends, Mary is probably the 2nd most unique soul in all of history, behind Jesus Himself. No one else was ever called "Full of grace" like that, and I believe that that "fullness of grace" meant she was way more than what a lot of folks think she was. No...she's not God! But I think she had to be about THE holiest person imaginable. Can ya imagine living every day of your life with the real live son of the living God as your kid? WOW! Now THAT's "walkin' with Jesus!" :D
So...the Assumption is really pretty easy for me and that is why.
(I cite no scripture because the pertinent passages should be fairly easy for anyone to find if interested.)
There are extrabiblical and non-canonical , but traditional sources about this belief.
Here is what the Catholic Encyclopedia says about it all:
THE FACT OF THE ASSUMPTION
Regarding the day, year, and manner of Our Lady's death, nothing certain is known. The earliest known literary reference to the Assumption is found in the Greek work De Obitu S. Dominae. Catholic faith, however, has always derived our knowledge of the mystery from Apostolic Tradition. Epiphanius (d. 403) acknowledged that he knew nothing definite about it (Haer., lxxix, 11). The dates assigned for it vary between three and fifteen years after Christ's Ascension. Two cities claim to be the place of her departure: Jerusalem and Ephesus. Common consent favours Jerusalem, where her tomb is shown; but some argue in favour of Ephesus. The first six centuries did not know of the tomb of Mary at Jerusalem.
The belief in the corporeal assumption of Mary is founded on the apocryphal treatise De Obitu S. Dominae, bearing the name of St. John, which belongs however to the fourth or fifth century. It is also found in the book De Transitu Virginis, falsely ascribed to St. Melito of Sardis, and in a spurious letter attributed to St. Denis the Areopagite. If we consult genuine writings in the East, it is mentioned in the sermons of St. Andrew of Crete, St. John Damascene, St. Modestus of Jerusalem and others. In the West, St. Gregory of Tours (De gloria mart., I, iv) mentions it first. The sermons of St. Jerome and St. Augustine for this feast, however, are spurious. St. John of Damascus (P. G., I, 96) thus formulates the tradition of the Church of Jerusalem:
St. Juvenal, Bishop of Jerusalem, at the Council of Chalcedon (451), made known to the Emperor Marcian and Pulcheria, who wished to possess the body of the Mother of God, that Mary died in the presence of all the Apostles, but that her tomb, when opened, upon the request of St. Thomas, was found empty; wherefrom the Apostles concluded that the body was taken up to heaven.
Today, the belief in the corporeal assumption of Mary is universal in the East and in the West; according to Benedict XIV (De Festis B.V.M., I, viii, 18) it is a probable opinion, which to deny were impious and blasphemous.
History is not all in the Bible...not even close. Nor is mathematics, science, or all literature! No; God might not let us know in the canon... but there is a great deal of stuff that He didn't see fit to include in the canon. Is there a miraculous principle of God doing things like this? Of course there is! The Holy Spirit snatched Philip away to Azotus after he baptized the eunuch...is that the only time that happened? No one can say...not even preachers and teachers. Are there stories of such things happening after the NT was closed? Yep. Lots of them...or does your particular version of Christianity disbelieve in miracles? If so I'd say that is really a shame.
I think that the whole fallacy of what you try to tell us is summed up in the closing line of the statement:
|Always go back to the Bible for your answers.|
I have a problem with those who always say that Mary could not have been assumed into heaven when there are so many things that God has done in the NT (Acts in particular) that are precedent setting. There are a lot of things that God has done that are beyond my simple comprehension, yet that does not make me doubt the things that He did for her. I mean if people are willing to believe in tongues and the other gifts of the Holy Spirit, then why not this as well? The fact that God has assumed OT faithful such as Moses & Elijah makes me wonder why He wouldn't do the same for someone as holy and special as His own grace filled mother. That just seems like a serious case of doubt to me.
A non Catholic friend said:
I've been thinking about this, & doing a little research (& a lot of toiling with my brain!!)
I finally came up with what I had been trying to remember. In Matthew 16:28, Jesus says:"There be some standing here, which shall not taste of death, till they see the Son of man coming in His kingdom"(KJV)...OK, this is explained away by a lot of people, but this--plus the reference in Revelation--It seems to me that He is saying that there is somebody--a real actual human person-- that is known to/in the company of the apostles, who is not going to die, but be taken to Heaven without dying.
And, as someone has all ready pointed out, the person with the empty tomb--in fact, the missing tomb--is Mary.
So combine that with the fact that this is not something that just occurred to someone one morning--It has been believed throughout history, I find that it is a pretty sure thing that, yes, Mary was assumed into Heaven.
Besides, why not??
The fact that there are extra canonical sources that tell these things makes it all the more clear. There is ample precedent in scripture and when a thinking person considers all this one can see that it follows logic and the sense of the Word of God. It therefore does not surprise me that the Church proclaims it infallibly.
God is perfect and His works are the source of all wisdom and truth, therefore they are also logical. If there is error...it will be in our capacity to understand, not His works or will.
My contention is that this is still within the character that God has revealed to us in His word and the Assumption is not inconsistent with that nature since God did the same thing with OT people who were not His mother.
Here's the link to Munificentissimus Deus so everyone can read it for themselves.
MUNIFICENTISSIMUS DEUS Since you bring up this document, I decided to have a look at it for myself, and found this:
"21. Thus St. John Damascene, an outstanding herald of this traditional truth, spoke out with powerful eloquence when he compared the bodily Assumption of the loving Mother of God with her other prerogatives and privileges. "It was fitting that she, who had kept her virginity intact in childbirth, should keep her own body free from all corruption even after death. It was fitting that she, who had carried the Creator as a child at her breast, should dwell in the divine tabernacles. It was fitting that the spouse, whom the Father had taken to himself, should live in the divine mansions. It was fitting that she, who had seen her Son upon the cross and who had thereby received into her heart the sword of sorrow which she had escaped in the act of giving birth to him, should look upon him as he sits with the Father. 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."
22. These words of St. John Damascene agree perfectly with what others have taught on this same subject. Statements no less clear and accurate are to be found in sermons delivered by Fathers of an earlier time or of the same period, particularly on the occasion of this feast. And so, to cite some other examples, St. Germanus of Constantinople considered the fact that the body of Mary, the virgin Mother of God, was incorrupt and had been taken up into heaven to be in keeping, not only with her divine motherhood, but also with the special holiness of her virginal body. "You are she who, as it is written, appears in beauty, and your virginal body is all holy, all chaste, entirely the dwelling place of God, so that it is henceforth completely exempt from dissolution into dust. Though still human, it is changed into the heavenly life of incorruptibility, truly living and glorious, undamaged and sharing in perfect life." And another very ancient writer asserts: "As the most glorious Mother of Christ, our Savior and God and the giver of life and immortality, has been endowed with life by him, she has received an eternal incorruptibility of the body together with him who has raised her up from the tomb and has taken her up to himself in a way known only to him.""