August 15, 2021
Blessed and Happy Feast day to all of you! Today we celebrate the Feast of the Glorious Assumption of Mary into heaven. As the crowning privilege of her life of obedience and faith as the mother of Jesus, who is God incarnate, Mary was taken, body and soul into heaven after her death. This is unlike others of the human race, of which Mary is a part, where the soul separates from the body at the moment of death, the soul being judged and given the sentence of Heaven, purgatory or hell; the body lying in the tomb until the end of time. Because this is true, Mary experiences the fullness of Christ’s resurrection before anyone else. What Mary enjoys now, we the Christian faithful hope to experience one day.
164 years ago, Bishop Amadeus Rappe, the first bishop of Cleveland, established a parish in our area for a group of some 46 poor farming families and placed it under the patronage of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary. Times were tough for our parish in those early years. It closed and reopened on at least 3 separate occasions. When things were needed to make the parish operative again, those poor families came forward and gave from their need to make Assumption their spiritual home that they loved.
While many of the families of Assumption find themselves much better off than those of the past, you still possess the same endearing quality of rising to meet the needs of our parish community as well as the poor who seek our assistance, whether it be here in Broadview Heights, the Mount Pleasant neighborhood in Cleveland where we lend support to the only Catholic presence left there, or in the various dioceses of Haiti. This is what makes Assumption great.
In my time here of 20 years, I was privileged to witness faith in action manifested by so many people doing the most simple things like making pierogi, working the picnics, cleaning the church and grounds, coaching CYO, and many other things that lend vibrancy to a parish community. Some of these have gone to their eternal reward and I thank God for these good souls every day. As they pass on, they also pass the torch to the new generation. How will we keep the Gospel message alive for the present and future? Like those before us, we need to believe in Assumption and love our parish. That is how it will remain a vibrant community for years to come.
As we honor Our Lady in her glorious Assumption, let us recommit ourselves to following her son Jesus by living the Gospel and putting our faith in action. I would like to take this opportunity to thank all of you for the good you do each day for your parish. “Happy Feast”