St. Peter's Square
Thursday, 15 August 2019
Dear brothers and sisters, good morning!
In today's Gospel, solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, the Blessed Virgin prays, saying: "My soul magnifies the Lord and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior" (Lk 1: 46-47). Let us look at the verbs of this prayer: magnificent and rejoice. Two verbs: "magnificent" and "exult". It is exultant when something so beautiful happens that it is not enough to rejoice in, in the soul, but we want to express happiness with the whole body: then we rejoice. Mary rejoices because of God. Who knows if it happened to us to exult for the Lord: we exult for a result obtained, for a good news, but today Mary teaches us to exult in God. Why? Because He - God - does "great things" (see v. 49).
Great things are referred to by the other verb: magnifying. "My magnificent soul". Magnify. In fact to magnify means to exalt a reality for its greatness, for its beauty ... Mary exalts the greatness of the Lord, praises him saying that he is really great. In life it is important to look for big things, otherwise you get lost behind so many little things. Mary shows us that if we want our life to be happy, God must be placed first, because he alone is great. How many times, instead, we live pursuing things of little importance: prejudices, rancor, rivalry, envy, illusions, superfluous material goods ... How many pettiness in life! We know it. Today Mary invites us to look up at the "great things" that the Lord has accomplished in her. In us too, in each of us, the Lord does many great things. We must recognize and exult, magnify God, for these great things.
These are the "great things" that we celebrate today. Mary is assumed in heaven: small and humble, she receives the highest glory first. She, who is a human creature, one of us, reaches eternity in soul and body. And he awaits us there, like a mother waiting for her children to return home. In fact the people of God invoke it as a "gateway to heaven". We are on our way, pilgrims to the house up there. Today we look at Mary and we see the goal. We see that a creature was assumed to the glory of Jesus Christ risen, and that creature could only be her, the Mother of the Redeemer. We see that in heaven, together with Christ, the New Adam, there is also Mary, the new Eve, and this gives us comfort and hope in our pilgrimage down here.
The feast of the Assumption of Mary is a call for all of us, especially for those who are afflicted by doubts and sadness, and live with their eyes turned downwards, they cannot look up. We look up, the sky is open; it does not arouse fear, it is no longer distant, because on the threshold of heaven there is a mother who awaits us and is our mother. She loves us, smiles and helps us with care. As every mother wants the best for her children and tells us: "You are precious in the eyes of God; you are not made for the little fulfillment of the world, but for the great joys of heaven ”. Yes, because God is joy, not boredom. God is joy. Let us allow ourselves to be taken by the hand of the Madonna. Every time we take the Rosary in hand and pray for it, we take a step towards the great goal of life.
Let us be attracted by true beauty, let us not be sucked into the smallness of life, but choose the greatness of the sky. May the Blessed Virgin, Door of Heaven, help us to look every day with trust and joy there, where our true home is, where she is, which awaits us as a mother.
After the Angelus
Dear brothers and sisters,
I express my closeness to the populations of several South Asian countries, badly affected by the monsoon rains. I pray for the victims and the displaced, for all the homeless families. May the Lord give strength to them and to those who help them.
Today in Czestochowa, Poland, many pilgrims have gathered to celebrate the Virgin Assumption and to remember the centenary of the restoration of diplomatic relations between the Holy See and Poland. I send my greetings to all those gathered at the foot of the Black Madonna and I urge them to pray for the whole Church. And I also greet the Poles here present!
I address a cordial greeting to you, Italian pilgrims and those from various countries. In particular, I greet the Missionary Family Donum Dei, the Union Seglar de San Antonio Maria Claret, the Venezuelan group of the "Festeros de San Vicente" who came by bicycle from Valencia, and the young people of Novoli engaged in a school camp.
And now I ask you to accompany this gesture with prayer: I will bless a large number of Rosaries for the brothers of Syria. About six thousand crowns of the Rosary were made on the initiative of the Association "Aid to the Church in Need"; the Carmelite Sisters made them in Bethlehem. Today, at this great feast of Mary, I bless them, and then they will be distributed to the Catholic communities in Syria as a sign of my closeness, especially to families who have lost someone because of the war. Prayer made with faith is powerful! We continue to pray the Rosary for peace in the Middle East and in the whole world.
We do the blessing, praying first to the Hail Mary.
Recite Hail Mary
And I wish you all a good Feast of the Assumption. Please don't forget to pray for me. Good lunch and goodbye!
Full Text Source: Vatican.va - Unofficial Translation