Isn’t it a mystery that every August 15th, Catholics around the world celebrate the solemnity of the Assumption of the virgin Mary, a delve into her earthly life and assumption into heaven, and the mystery behind it, which originated from the early days of Christianity.
According to St. John of Damascus, the Roman emperor Marcian requested the body of Mary, Mother of God at the Council of Chalcedon, in 451.
The belief in the assumption of Mary was a widely-held tradition and a frequent meditation in the writings of saints throughout the centuries. But it was not practiced until the last century.
In 1950, Pope Pius XII made a foolproof, ex-cathedra declaration in the apostolic constitution Munificentissimus Deus officially depicting the dogma of the Assumption.
“By the authority of Our Lord Jesus Christ, of the Blessed Apostles Peter and Paul, and by our own authority, we pronounce, declare, and define it to be a divinely revealed dogma: 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.”
Today, the solemnity of the Assumption is marked as a major feast day and a public holiday in many countries. In most countries, including the United States, it is a holy day of obligation.