"A great sign appeared in the sky, a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars." —Revelation 12:1
The universal church is the woman clothed with the sun, who wails aloud in pain and labors to give birth (Rv 12:2). The church is laboring to give birth to billions of new Christians. The huge dragon, the devil, is trying to intimidate the church and devour the new-born Christians (Rv 12:4). At this time of crisis, the Lord sends another woman clothed with the sun, that is, Mary, to strengthen the church as she evangelizes.
Just as Mary was sent to the pregnant Elizabeth, so she is sent to the "expecting" church as it gives birth to new Christians (see Lk 1:39ff). There are almost four billion people who need a new birth. The church must be their mother so they can be born again. And yet the dragon rages because he knows his time is short (Rv 12:12), and the church struggles. "When a woman is in labor she is sad that her time has come. When she has borne her child, she no longer remembers her pain for joy that a man has been born into the world" (Jn 16:21).
Mary, assumed into heaven and totally victorious because of her faith in her Son, Jesus, is sent to the church both as mother and midwife. "Shall I bring a mother to the point of birth, and yet not let her child be born? says the Lord; Or shall I Who allow her to conceive, yet close her womb? says your God" (Is 66:9). Mary is midwife to the church and for the purpose of world evangelism.
Prayer: Father, this feast of the Assumption of Mary result in the completion of world evangelism and Your Son's final coming.
Promise: "Christ must reign until God has put all enemies under His feet, and the last enemy to be destroyed is death." —1 Cor 15:25-26
Praise: "My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord, my spirit finds joy in God my Savior" (Lk 1:46-47).
Rescript: †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, February 8, 2005
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