A Sentiment

God knew what He was doing when He sent a gentle breeze and brought a lovely butterfly to set my heart at ease. The happiness of your friendship and the gentleness of your words have touched my life in special ways and now I feel assured. Thank you for your loyalty and for reading everyday. I only hope you find things to make a happy day.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

The Assumption of Mary

A while back, I wrote about my statue of Mary. I painted it a few years ago in color. She stood in my garden, under the River Birch through a lot of weather and started to peel and disintegrate. We brought her into the garage and stripped the paint away. Now she was just a statue in concrete.

You can see the peeling paint. I couldn't have her in my yard in this condition, but I really didn't want to go through all the work of refinishing her.
Well, Joe and I worked together on this project and got her cleaned up. We decided to paint her white. We have a light on her all night and the white shows up so nicely. We now have planted around her...hostas in chartreuse, coleus in burgundy and chartreuse, pink impatiens, Star Gazer lilies and clematis. I have ordered three Japanese Anemones in pink for this garden next year. Our Priest made a visit a few weeks ago. He was out looking at the yard and we had him bless the statue.

I'm a convert to Catholicism, and I'm still learning about my Church and it's beliefs. Today is a Holy Day. I think my Church has some wonderful things to tell. The stories and beliefs are so interesting. Everyone knows that I help take care of our Mary's Garden at St. Mary's Church. I don't do this just because I love to garden, I want to keep this tribute to Mary beautiful. I don't worship Mary...I feel that I am honoring her Son, by my thoughts and deeds.There are so many references to flowers in our belief. Some very interesting folklore for a gardener to read. We all have our beliefs and I am interested in learning about them all. In writing this post, I hope to put down words that explain this day for Catholics. I went to the internet to get some information...so I would be accurate.

This wonderful summer feast is one of the oldest in Church history. The Feast of the Assumption, honouring Our Lady, was first celebrated in Palestine in the year 529. It was such a strong tradition in the Church, needing no confirmation, that it wasn't until November 1 1950 that Pope Pius XII declared the Assumption of Mary to be a dogma of the faith.
An ancient and beautiful legend about the Assumption of Mary tells the story this way: When Our Lady felt her time on earth coming to an end, she sent word to all the Apostles. They were out preaching the Good News of her Son 'to all the corners of the world' as Jesus had commanded them. When they received her message, of course they paid their respects to their new congregations and disciples and left so as to hurry to her side. After long sea voyages and treks over land, they arrived just in time to say goodbye and pray with her one last time. Then she died.
Only Thomas was late. He had been delayed by some way or another, and had been travelling day and night since to try and catch up. But he was too late. When he finally arrived, hot and travel stained, he was grief-stricken to learn that she had been laid to rest in a tomb. He wept bitterly, and begged the Apostle's permission to open the tomb so that he could see her beloved face. At first, the other Apostles were reluctant. After all, she had been dead for three days, and it was a hot country. Finally they yielded to his tears and rolled away the stone.
To their amazement, the tomb was filled with flowers all giving off a sweet fragrance. They felt happier and healthier just smelling the beautiful scent that came wafting out of that tomb. Where they had placed her body was only her shroud, filled with more flowers. Her body had been carried up to heaven by her Son and the angels, to join her soul.
Now, it must be remembered that after the great Fall - when Adam and Eve disobeyed God and ate of the Fruit of the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil and were cast out of the Garden - all the flowers lost their scent, or perhaps we lost the ability to smell them. The herbs lost their healing powers too, and were only good for flavouring our food. Not that that's not a good thing mind you, but to be able to heal sickness and mend broken bones, well that's something more important that a nicely flavoured stew.
It's only right that on the day of her Assumption, Our Blessed Lady's last gift to us should be the restoring of the scent of flowers and the healing power of herbs.
I hope that some may find this interesting. It is one of my ways of making this day special. We will go to Mass tonight and celebrate with our Church.


Sue said...

What a lovely tribute to Mary. So many non-Catholics believe we worship the saints and Mary. You said it correctly, we honor them. Your re-do of her statue looks nice and serene. Sue

Balisha said...

Thankyou Sue...I loved putting this on my blog. I don't know how many took the time to read it, but it was important that it be here. Thanks for reading.

coolwaterworks said...

I enjoyed reading this post Balisha. It reminded me of the same story my grandmother used to read to me in the afternoons to get us to sleep...

Indeed, it is but right to correct the notion that we Catholics worship Mary... Only God deserves the worship, but He would be glad if we honor the mother of His Son...

God bless!!!