August is that turn around month for families. The end of the summer vacation is approaching and kids go back to school. They find themselves in new classroom, with new teachers and have new hopes and dreams and fears and worries. In the middle of the month we are presented with a Holy Day of Obligation; the Feast of the Assumption of Mary, Our Blessed Mother, into heaven. This feast celebrates that moment when the sinless Mary is received into heavenly glory as a foretaste of what awaits us. Mary, however, goes straight to God; we have to be purified enroute so that when we arrive in heaven we too will be spotless. This is purgatory. This Feast allows us time to reflect on the simplicity and virtue of our blessed Mother and her role in salvation history as the bearer of God’ son. We perhaps should look at those things which make us less pure and do something about them. The enticing thought of the totality of fulfilment; of joy, peace and glory with God in heaven that we celebrate in the Feast of the Assumption (so beautifully called by our Orthodox brothers and sisters, the “Dormition of Mary” – the going to sleep – ) should spur us on to try and purify our lives, intensions and relationships here and now.
May God bless you, your families, and the week ahead,
Fr Aidan Peter