Happy Sunday fellow Okie Trads and readers far and near. Deo gracias. We've crossed the finish line. We've made it to September, which means the Purgatorial heat of summer is subsiding. Cooler temperatures, Fall backyard fires, calming breezes. So I was reminded of what awaits all our efforts in life, as we prayed this Sunday's Glorious Mysteries.
The First Glorious Mystery: the Resurrection:
All of those pains and sufferings. All of those earthly accomplishments which fade like the colors of summer. All our tears, grieving, and torments. All of that will pass away. For those of us who persevere to the end, on the last day at the end of the world, our souls will be united to our glorified bodies. The bodies of the non-elect won't be glorified. All will face the eastern horizon and the rising Son of God who will judge all Mankind. If the Church Fathers are correct, the majority will be damned. Our bodies will be so perfect there will be absolutely no pain or sufferings. What we consider now to be preternatural gifts--telepathy, bilocation, superhuman strength--will shared by all. In our sanctified state, our natures will even rise above that of the angels, thanks to that "happy fault of Adam" and the Redemptive Act of the New Adam.
The Second Glorious Mystery: the Ascension of Jesus into Heaven:
Our Lord's path was circular. Just as He came from the Father, so He had to go back to the Father. He had to join Himself to that circular path because that is our own path, and He "became like us in all things but sin." We come from God, and so must return to God.
That Second Person of the Blessed Trinity had descended upon the Blessed Virgin Mary 33 years before as the Incarnate Word. 33 years later that Incarnate Word ascended back to Heaven, that sacred abode where the Almighty manifests for divine worship by the angels and the Saints. Our Lord was risen, and showed again his divinity through His Transfiguration. God from God, Begotten and not made.
The Third Glorious Mystery: the Descent of the Holy Ghost on the Blessed Virgin Mary and the Apostles at Pentecost:
If the Holy Ghost is able to manifest Himself in a sacred place--whether it be the blessed womb of the Blessed Virgin Mary, a consecrated church, or the sanctuary, so He manifested Himself in a sacred way in the Catholic Church. The Catholic Church became a living reality that Pentecost when it's first members received the Paraclete in a sacred way. The sacredness of this Divine Spirit cannot be fully experienced except within the Holy Catholic Church, which He made His home.
The Fourth Glorious Mystery: the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary into Heaven, body and soul:
One thing I love about our Catholic Faith, is how one truth follows from another. Our Faith is a system of orchestrated truths. Because God became incarnate through a woman, He preserved her from original sin, remarkably made possible by the Cross 47 years later (14 years + 33 years). And so Our Lady was also preserved from the consequence of original sin--i.e. death. Instead she mystically fell asleep in her old age before ascending to Heaven. Isn't it likewise remarkable to point out to the non-believer that there is no grave nor remains for Our Lady. If the first Christians had preserved the relics of the 12 Apostles, certainly they would have preserved those of the Mother of God. But no, God did not want her to be incomplete in Heaven. He wanted her there both in soul and in body.
The Fifth Glorious Mystery: the Coronation of the Blessed Virgin Mary as the Queen of Angels and Saints:
We've reached the end. The Joyful and Sorrowful Mysteries have come and gone. The final Glorious Mysteries have culminated in Heaven, where there will be no suffering, but eternal bliss. There Our Lady stands near her Son who sits on the Divine Throne. Every prayer passes through her heart and is heard by Our Lord from the lips of Our Mother. And every grace from her Son flows through her mantle to us here below, the Church Militant, fighting for our salvation, for our own soul and that of our brother and sister. The Mother of God took her final place of glory as the Mother of the Church.
Here's hoping you all have a cool, fun Labor Day!