The Feast of the Assumption – Saturday 15th August 2015
The Feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary is celebrated on 15th August each year. This year it falls on a Saturday. It commemorates the death of Mary and her assumption, body and soul, into Heaven before her body began to decay. It provides us with a foretaste of our own bodily resurrection at the end of time. Indeed, Pope Benedict XVI explained that “By contemplating Mary in heavenly glory, we understand that the earth is not the definitive homeland for us either, and that if we live with our gaze fixed on eternal goods we will one day share in this same glory and the earth will become more beautiful.” It is a Holy Day of Obligation for Catholics and the most important of the Marian feasts.
The feast is often referred to as the Feast of the Dormition: a word, which means “the falling asleep.” As such, if you enter Churches throughout Mallorca
at this time, you will find statues of the Virgin Mary, lying as if she were perhaps only asleep. Rather, she lies on her deathbed, awaiting her transportation to Eternal Life.
In the Church of Sant Bartomeu
in the square in Soller, there is a very beautiful statue, which can be found as soon as you enter the Church. Mary is adorned with a crown with twelve stars (symbolising the twelve apostles) and confirming her status as Queen of Heaven. She is surrounded by Bellveure plants (in Mallorquin), or Kochia Scoparia. These are tall grasses, which are associated with the Assumption, as they point to Heaven and therefore follow the path the Virgin will take. You will notice that the faithful will touch and kiss the statue and feel the plants, as they pray to her and contemplate the promise her son made: “You know the way to the place where I am going” (John 14:4).
Please do come and see the beautiful statue in our Church in Soller on Saturday and Sunday, 15th and 16th August.
Religious Affairs Correspondent and Soller Resident