The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary
A Reflection by Gracie Bott, 2021
When I was younger, I loved Mary. I remember learning about her in religion class and thinking, “Wow. I want to be just like her.” I may have been the only one to think this, but I always assumed that I could have done what she did if I was asked. I thought if God called me directly to do something, of course I would say yes! It seems so simple, right? Do the right thing.
But, as I got older, I learned differently. It’s not always that simple. In the midst of all our journeys as high school students, I think we can admit that at times we face challenges, even if we know what we are supposed to do. So, how and why do we push ourselves to do the right thing? Thankfully, we have our mother Mary to look up to as the perfect role model. It’s a miracle that we have her and her stories to inspire us to do the right thing,
When I found out that I was going to be giving today’s reflection, I was nervous and didn’t know exactly where to start. I was a little unsure of what I would write about. As I was thinking about ideas, I decided to just focus on what today is about – the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary into Heaven. Immediately what struck me the most was that for us, as teenage girls, who struggle to always be faithful to God, the story of Mary’s assumption is hard to relate to. I hope I don’t burst any of your bubbles, but most of us probably will not be assumed into heaven like Mary was. For me, that was discouraging at first. But after I read the readings, prayed, and reflected on it more, I started thinking about why Mary was assumed into Heaven. Now, this is obvious. It was because she was without sin, and because she said yes to God fully. She always did the right thing. She trusted God more than any of us in this room. She did what we all hope that we could do. Especially for us as young women, we need this strong, Godly woman to be our role model.
As the school year moves on, we all will inevitably make mistakes. But in my own reflection on the assumption, I learned something important. I learned that if we look to Mary as our model, we will always have guidance in making the right choices. So, this year, I challenge you to adopt Mary as your spiritual mother and guide. When you look to Mary as your role model, and simply do the right thing, I think you will be shocked at the outcome.
There are so many little things that we can all do here at Dominican to strengthen our faith lives. Personally, I find that when I follow Mary’s example of faithfulness, I see the benefits of including God in each of my decisions. I often like to do homework in the chapel if I need a quiet space. When I do my morning bible study, I feel ten times more motivated throughout the day. I try harder once I get to school. I’m happier. I finish my homework before watching TV. I can’t explain why, but when you put God into your daily routine, you will see changes that you’d never expect. And the more you do this, the easier it becomes to do the right thing.
I know that starting a new school year can be nerve-racking. But, don’t be afraid to reach out and find new friends, and especially to share your faith with them. Make sure the people you surround yourself with this year will help you grow in your faith and will accept you as you are. Also, don’t be afraid to try something new, like a club or sport. You could also volunteer to help at a retreat, say a rosary or prayer in between classes, begin a lunchtime devotional, or engage more in your religion class. If you feel God calling you to do something new, do it! Follow in Mary’s footsteps and listen to God’s calling for you. Pay close attention to new things you can learn about your faith here at Dominican, and how you can use Mary as a role model in your daily life.
And lastly, remember to ask Mary for guidance when you feel overwhelmed. Invest your extra time in prayer, even if it means taking your homework into the chapel. This year will inevitably have some stress. But make sure not to forget God when you feel like the world’s moving at the speed of light. Mary never forgot God, even when her son was being crucified. She shows us that when it seems like nothing is going right, we can turn to God. She turned to God at every fork in the road. We can all follow Mary’s example, and with God’s guidance, make this year the best one yet. I challenge you to follow the path that God has for you, and to not fear choosing God, because He will never forsake you.