14 August 2010


Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary
Lk 1:39-56

It happened when apartheid was still a menace inflicting the world. Black people were discriminated against and were called by the pejorative tag “colored people”. A black father brought his son to the carnival in town.

In the carnival, the little black boy’s attention was immediately caught by a clown who clasped to strings that kept a number of balloons from flying up in the air. The balloons were of different and bright colors: red, blue, yellow, green, white, orange, black and others.

The little black boy fixed his gaze on both the clown and his balloons. After a while, one of the balloons flew up in the air. Then another one. Then another one. And another one still. One by one, the strings of the balloons escaped from the clasp of the clown.

The little black boy approached the clown and asked, “Sir, if you let go of the black balloon, will it also fly up in the air?”

The clown smiled at the little black boy and released the string that kept the black balloon from flying away. Thereupon, the black balloon, as expected, flew up in the air.

“You see, my son,” the clown told the little black boy, “it is not the color of the balloon that makes the balloon fly up in the air.” “It is not what is outside of it that makes a balloon rise,” the clown continued smiling, “but what is inside it.”

As we celebrate today the Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, let us, together with her, magnify God for the great things He has done to her, and examine what lies inside of us so as to see if we, too, will rise someday. The gospel today reveals to us what Mary has in her heart always: God. However, God is not locked up in her heart. From her heart, Mary gave God to others.

God makes us rise. We rise not only unto the heavens but, even before that happens, we rise from our comfort zones to bring God to others as Mary did to her cousin, Elizabeth. No matter what the color of our skin is, we are destined to rise up to the glory of heaven someday but we are called to rise to the demands of charity today.



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