Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Painter and Architect (1483-1520)


3. The Glory of the Assumption.
For the last time contemplate that tomb from where a burst of light is going to spring, a life victorious over death.

During the three days that Her immaculate body remained in the tomb, it was guarded by angels sent by God; a body-guard to Her who was shortly to be crowned as their Queen. Hearken to the heavenly strains incessantly intoned by the angels in honor of that virginal body. Listen to the appeals by which they would exert a sweet violence on God, constantly repeating those words of the psalm that seem to have been written for that occasion:
Rise, Lord, and hasten to Thy resting place. Thou and Thy ark of sanctity. Rise to the heights of that throne, sit at the right of Thy Father, since this is the place that belongs Thee. But take along with Thee that holy Ark of the Covenant where you were once contained, where the infinite treasure of Thy sanctity was deposited. Glorify already that holy flesh, that most pure blood that provided the elements of that sacred body which furnished Thee the matter to be offered to Thy Father, the Host of atonement and sanctification for the sins of the whole world.
And in fact that most happy moment arrived in which God fulfilled these longings of the heavens and by His order the soul of Mary came to join Her body again. Then the body, quickened by the life of immortality, starts to rise to heaven, as naturally, says the Church, as the scented smoke of the incense rises to the sky.

Countless legions of angels climb down from heaven to take part in Mary's triumphant entry. Their victorious music, their hymns of glory fill the air with harmony. Their joy is unparalleled. God today has enhanced their glory and increased their happiness. Today all of them shine with a new life; and in their midst, as the moon among the stars, the most pure beauty of the Mother of God shines forth with extraordinary splendor. Her Son Who personally came down to receive Her and thus enhance Her triumph takes Her by the hand. Slowly She rises from this earth, pierces the clouds and arrives at the gates of heaven where all the angels, impatiently awaiting Her arrival have come to welcome the magnificent procession.

So ends the scene on this earth, so begins the glory of heaven. If you could pack into your imagination all the greatest and most splendid things imaginable, all would be nothing in comparison with that sublime and magnificent reality. Measure yourself in all your littleness and misery before the greatness of your Mother and rise with Her far above the things of this earth. In a special manner try to imitate Her humility so that you too with Her may one day be escorted to, and glorified in, the heavenly life.

[Excerpted from 'MARIAN MEDITATIONS' Book by Rev. Dr. Ildefonso R. Villar, Salesian Philippine Province, Nihil Obstat; Imprimatur]