On 15 August, many parts of Europe celebrate the Feast of the Assumption of Mary, as well in the Algarve Portugal. It is a national Holiday, most shops and public places are closed on this holiday in Portugal.
The Feast of the Assumption of Mary is a very important day in the Catholic religion. It is the principal feast of the Blessed Virgin, the mother of Jesus Christ.
The Assumption Of Mary is a feast day that is celebrated on August 15th every year. This feast day commemorates Mary’s death and her assumption into heaven. Because it commemorates this sacred occasion – which is viewed by many as Mary’s divine birthday – it is not only a Holy Day of Obligation, but is one of the most important Marian feasts.
History of Assumption of Mary
This feast commemorates two events – the departure of Mary from this life and the assumption of her body into heaven.
The Church’s official doctrine of the Assumption says that at the end of her life on earth Mary was assumed, body and soul, into heaven.
Some mistakenly believe Mary “ascended” into heaven, which is incorrect. It was Jesus Christ who ascended into heaven, by his own power. But Mary was assumed or taken up into heaven by God.
Pope Pius Xll, in 1950, defined that Mary “after the completion of her earthly life…was assumed body and soul into the glory of Heaven.” Her body wasn’t allowed to corrupt nor was it allowed to remain in a tomb. Though there are claims by some cities about possessing her temporary tomb.
In the early Christian centuries relics of saints and those who gave their lives for the faith were jealously guarded and highly prized. Many cities claim the mortal remains of saints, both famous and little-known. But there are no records of Mary’s bodily remains being venerated anywhere.
How is Assumption of Mary celebrated in Portugal?
Aside from the customary liturgical observances that accompany this feast day, there are also many different traditions and celebrations that are observed by Christians all over the world. These celebrations range from the blessing of the oceans by coastal fishing communities to the giving of flowers and blessed herbs to the sick. This day include a processional parade, the commencement of a brass band. Furthermore it is often celebrated with brilliant parades and informal gatherings.
This feast day allows participants to reflect on the divine nature of the Virgin Mary and serves as a reminder that there is a place in heaven for God’s truly faithful.
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