The Feast of the Assumption is generally accepted as the principal feast day celebrated in honour of the ;Mother of God. By the Assumption is understood the passing of the Blessed Virgin, both body and soul, into Heaven. Although this belief has not been declared by the Church as an article of faith, nevertheless, Catholics from the early ages have so universally acce1Jted it that it cannot be denied.
There were some who once held that Mary did not suffer death since death is the punishment of sin, and Mary being without sin, could not die. But Mary could not have had privileges above her Divine Son. Her privileges depended upon her divine motherhood. Her Son died, therefore she also died. Her Son was human as well as Divine, Mary was His mother.
However, because she was human, her sinlessness, although not a sufficient reason for exemption from death, was sufficient reason for exemption from death by disease, or from corruption after death. Her virginal integrity during life was a reason why her body should remain incorrupt in death, and should be honoured with a speedy resurrection. She who through life had been free from the slightest taint of sin, who had been closely associated with Christ in the conflict with evil, was most appropriately honoured with this triumph over sin in a complete resurrection and glorification of her body and her soul. It is to her sanctity that Mary owes the glory of her Assumption. Immaculate from the moment of her conception the Blessed Virgin remained pure to the moment of her death. Yet the favours she received from 1 God were given to her because she conformed her will to the Will of God.
In order to be crowned one has to work for such an honour. Mary, who was the l.ost privileged among creatures, was not dispensed from this law. She triumphed because she conquered; she received glory because she deserved glory. Never did any creature receive so abundant and so excellent graces as did the Blessed Virgin; neither did she ever receive any that was not increased by her most perfect co-operation.
We receive graces, although not in the fulness that Mary received them. Her co-operation deserved the glory of her Assumption; yet our glory will in like manner depend upon our co-operation. We cannot hope for the glory gained by the Mother of God - such a glory is impossible for us born as we are in sin- but we can hope for a glory that will be due to us in proportion as we conform to those graces which God sees fit to bestow upon us.
The Malayan Catholic Newsletter, August 13, 1950. page 7