Thursday of 19th Week of Ordinary C--Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary

The Mother of Christ Was Raised On High

Joke: Ms. Holy cheek, the Catholic Sunday school teacher, had just finished explaining the feast of the Assumption to her class. "Now," she said, "let all those children who want to go to heaven to see their heavenly mother raise their hands." All the children raised their hands except little Marie in the front row. "Don't you want to go to heaven, Marie?" asked Ms. Holy cheek. "I can't," said Marie tearfully. "My mother told me to come straight home after Sunday school.

On the bus of one hot summer afternoon in Texas, everybody was quiet that imprinted on their faces with wonders, worries, and might be stressed of life. Nobody talked to nobody. At one of the bus stops, this quiet environment became alive with laughing, talking, and smiling when they saw a young woman just joined their journey with the baby on her hands. When the bus began to roll the wheels, the young lady began to laugh and to talk to her little child. Her warming gentle care together with her child’s laugh did not only get others’ attention in the bus, but it also broke through the heat of the summer and all the heavy burden of life. The cooling air out of curiosity, relation, unity, and the life itself brought everybody back to the present moment, the moment of joy and happiness that these mother and child brought in. These mother and child destroyed the lonely and boring ride that they experienced earlier.

On this bus of life, a woman stepped on it bringing with her not only the gentle care and love to this life, but she also brought in a precious life, Jesus Christ. The moment she accepted the invitation to be the Mother of God, with deep faith and total trust in the Lord, she brought the gift of life into this world. This woman is the Blessed Virgin Mary entitled the Pillar of Faith that we celebrate her assumption into heaven today. The moment that she accepted the invitation to step into this bus of life, she became a great model of all time through her firm, strong faith and total trust in the Lord. By bringing Jesus, the Savior, into this world, she brought joy and happiness into this lonely and boring life. 

In today’s Gospel, Saint Luke beautifully describes a prayerful woman with deep faith and total trust in the Lord that she is most worthy to be lifted up into heaven that the Church solemnly celebrates today. Mary sets out and travels in haste to visit her cousin Elizabeth when she received the new from the angel. We might want to ask: Did she want to find out if it’s true or not what the angel told her that her cousin’s pregnant at the old age? Or rather, it was her total faith and trust in the words of the angel announced to her. Her total faith and trust in the Lord that the moment her cousin Elizabeth was greeted, reported in today’s Gospel, Elizabeth cried out, “Most blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb… For at the moment the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the infant in my womb leaped for joy.” Mary accepted the invitation to be the Mother of God to share the flesh of her flesh with her Son, to share the food and the drink with her Son through her breast, and even sharing the suffering and the darkest time with her Son when he was on the Cross. A marvelous woman was lifted up into heaven both Body and Soul after her death, or rather, after her fallen asleep that the Church solemnly celebrates each year.

“For just as in Adam all die,” reported in today’s second reading taken from the first letter of Saint Paul to the Corinthian Community, “so too in Christ shall all be brought to life.” Through his death and resurrection, Christ’s Mother should be lifted up into heaven with both body and soul after her Son’s dead. “Christ has been raised from the dead, the first fruits of those who have fallen asleep,” he would raise his mother up after her dead.

Has Elizabeth been worthy that the Mother of the Lord come to visit her? Or rather, Mary, with faith and trust in the Lord, reached out to her to help her in her need. “How does this happen to me that the mother of my Lord should come to me?” reported in today’s Gospel. The question is: Are we willingly to open our hearts just like Elizabeth to let her come into our house or not? How would we open up to allow her to come into our life if we don’t listen to the Word of God, don’t practice to live his teaching and the Church teaching?

Just as Mary is lifted up into heaven because of her prayerful life with a deep faith and total trust in the Lord, we are invited to develop a prayerful life by prayers and to participate in the life of the Church by attending Mass and other activities of the Church and to develop a deep faith and total trust in the Lord through learning to listen the Word of God and to practice to live the Word of God in our life. Decision is yours.


Weekday Homilies 2019

Homilies by Fr. Joseph Thang Nguyen

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