By Paul Kwok
My grade 4 students have to learn about rocks as this is manifested in the Ontario science curriculum. In their textbook, they will come across a long word – archaeologist – a word that they have never seen before. Every year I need to teach my students the meaning of this word. I tell them that archaeologists are people who spend much of their time digging beneath the surface of the earth to look for pottery, utensils, animal and human remains. And with the help of their discovery, we will be able to learn more about ancient civilizations that we know little or nothing about.
But no matter how hard the archaeologists work, they have not yet found and they will never find a tombstone that reads: ‘Here lies the body of the Blessed Virgin Mary, mother of Jesus.’
In 1950, Pope Pius XII infallibly proclaimed that Mary was taken up, body and soul, into heaven. It becomes the dogma of the Assumption. All Catholics should believe that Mary was taken up body and soul into heaven, as much as we believe in the presence of Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament.
When I was in my early twenties, I read the Bible every night before I went to bed. I started form the first chapter of Genesis to the last chapter of Revelation. Every night I would read about one or two chapters. It took me about five years to finish reading the entire Bible from the first page to the last page. I do not remember finding the words from anywhere in the Bible that say: “Mary was taken up body and soul into heaven.” Did the pope concoct this doctrine from his imagination? Or did he get some private revelation from above?