On November 1st, 1950 Pope Pius XII announced that the Immaculate Mother of God, the
ever Virgin Mary, having completed the course of her earthly life, was assumed body and soul
into heavenly glory. Mary completed her life as a shining example to the human race, the
perspective of the gift of assumption is offered to the whole human race.
Mary underwent bodily death, that is, it does not dogmatically define the point one way
or the other, as shown by the words "having completed the course of her earthly life". The
dogma states that Mary, the mother of Jesus, is more than just a saint of the Church or a
hero of faith. It is a declaration of faith in the Assumption of Mary, is said to have been
a divine gift to her as the 'Mother of God'.
The feast day recognizing Mother of Jesus, passage into Heaven is celebrated as 'The
Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary' by Roman Catholics.
Benedictus antiphon said "See the beauty of the daughter of Jerusalem, who ascended to
heaven like the rising sun at dawn."
The Assumption is important to many Catholic and Orthodox Christians as the Virgin
Mary's heavenly birthday (the day that Mary was received into Heaven). Her acceptance into
the glory of Heaven is seen by them as the symbol of the promise made by Jesus to all
enduring Christians that they too will be received into paradise.
August 15 is the day that Catholics have long celebrated what is called the Dormition
(falling asleep) or Assumption of the Virgin Mary. The Feast of the Assumption celebrates
both the happy departure of Mary from this life by her natural death, and her assumption
bodily into heaven.
The theme of the heavenly coronation of the Blessed Virgin as Queen of Heaven, often
represented paintings and sculpture, is related to her being assumed into Heaven where she
reigns next to her Divine Son.
The Roman Catholic Feast is celebrated on August 15, and the Eastern Orthodox and Eastern
Catholics celebrate the Dormition of the Theotokos (the falling asleep of the Mother of
God) on the same date, preceded by a 14-day fast period. Eastern Orthodox Christians believe
that Blessed Virgin Mary died a natural death, that her soul was received by Christ upon
death, and that her body was resurrected on the third day after her death and that she was
taken up into heaven bodily in anticipation of the general resurrection. Her tomb was found
empty on the third day.
According to some ancient Judeo-Christian traditions, 206 days (i.e., seven months) after
Mary's death and burial, Jesus appeared in the Merkabah with the soul of his Mother and calls
out to her body which leaves her tomb and ascends to embrace her own soul in the Merkabah.
Christians believe that "The death is not extinction, though, unlike Mary, all ordinary mortals,
even the most faithful Christians, the saints, must await the Second Coming of Christ and the
general Resurrection to receive our glorified bodies or say May we see heaven as our goal and
come to share her glory".