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The precious death of the Blessed Virgin Mary

4 min • Digitized on August 27, 2021

From The Glories of Mary, page 490
By St. Alphonsus Liguori

But behold, Jesus himself comes to take his mother to the kingdom of the blessed.

It was revealed to St. Elizabeth, that the Son appeared to Mary before she expired, with the cross in his hand, to show the special glory he had obtained from the redemption, having by his death made the acquisition of this great creature, who through the ages of eternity was to honor him more than all men and all angels.

St. John of Damascus relates, that he gave to her the holy viaticum, saying to her, tenderly:

Take, oh my mother, from my hands, that same body which thou hast given me.

And the mother having received with the greatest love that final communion, with her last sighs said to him:

My Son, into thy hands I commend my spirit; I recommend to thee this soul that thou, in thy goodness didst create even from the beginning, rich in so many graces, and by a peculiar privilege hast preserved from every stain of sin.

I commend to thee my body, from which thou hast deigned to take flesh and blood.

I commend to thee, also, these my dear children (speaking of the holy disciples who were around her), they are afflicted at my departure; do thou console them, who lovest them more than I do, bless them, and give them strength to do great things for thy glory.

The end of the life of Mary having now arrived, there was heard, as St. Jerome relates, in the apartment where she lay, a great harmony; and also, as it was revealed to St. Bridget, a great brightness was seen.

By this harmony and unusual splendor the holy Apostles perceived that Mary was then departing, at which they broke forth again in tears and prayers, and raising their hands, with one voice exclaimed:

Oh, our mother, now thou art going to heaven, and art leaving us, give us thy last benediction, and do not forget us in our misery.

And Mary, turning her eyes around upon them all, as if bidding them for the last time farewell, said:

Adieu, my children: I bless you; do not fear that I shall forget you.

And now death came, not indeed clothed in mourning and sadness, as it comes to others, but adorned with light and joy.

But why death, why death? Rather should we say that divine love came to cut the thread of that noble life.

And as a lamp before going out, her life, amid these last flickerings, flashed forth more brightly, and then expired.

Thus, this beautiful soul, her Son inviting her to follow him, wrapped in the flame of her charity, and in the midst of her amorous sighs, breathed forth a greater sigh of love, expired and died; and thus that great soul, that beautiful dove of our Lord, was released from the bonds of this life, and entered into the glory of the blessed, where she sits, and will sit, as queen of paradise, for all eternity.

Now Mary has left the earth, now she is in heaven. From thence this kind mother looks down upon us, who are still in this valley of tears, compassionates us, and promises us her support if we wish for it.

Let us pray her always that by the merits of her blessed death she may obtain for us a happy death; and if it please God, that she may obtain for us to die on a Saturday, which is dedicated to her honor, or on a day of the Novena, or of the octave of some of her feasts, as she has obtained for so many of her servants, and especially for St. Stanislas Kostka, for whom she obtained to die on the day of her glorious Assumption, as Father Bartoli relates in his life of the saint.

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