Question about the Assumption

Okay…let me see if I have this right. If I don’t you all can correct me.

The Catholic and Orthodox Churches both believe (though there is some dispute) that Mary died a natural death and was buried in a tomb. However, after some time in her tomb (three days) her body was assumed from her tomb into heaven. Do I have this right?

The Catholic Church teaches that the Virgin Mary “having completed the course of her earthly life, was assumed body and soul into heavenly glory.”

The Church makes no statement regarding whether or not she died.

vatican.va/holy_father/pius_xii/apost_constitutions/documents/hf_p-xii_apc_19501101_munificentissimus-deus_en.html

Orthodox teaching can be found here:

oca.org/orthodoxy/the-orthodox-faith/worship/the-church-year/dormition-of-the-theotokos

Neither the Catholics nor the Orthodox have any teaching about 3 days in a tomb vis-à-vis Mary.

Although I agree with you that the Church hasn’t made a definitive statement on whether she died or not, the document you quoted, Munificentissimus Deus, does say that Mary died in paragraph 20: “[The Fathers] offered more profound explanations of [Mary’s assumption], bringing out into sharper light the fact that this feast shows, not only that the dead body of the Blessed Virgin Mary remained incorrupt, but that she gained a triumph out of death, her heavenly glorification after the example of her only begotten Son, Jesus Christ-truths that the liturgical books had frequently touched upon concisely and briefly.”

It is my understanding that the more common speculation among theologians is that Mary did die before her Assumption. But it is not dogma that she died.

MD does not state that Mary died before she was assumed. What you refer to is in the preamble with the views of some Church Fathers.
The dogmatic declaration in MD is SOLELY about the Assumption of Mary.
Not only is it not dogma that Mary died it is not any kind of doctrine of the Church.

Personally, I believe Mary died first and was then assumed before her body was corrupted. However, others may believe she did not die first and I have no problem with that as Catholics are free to believe either way.

MD does not state that Mary died before she was assumed. What you refer to is in the preamble with the views of some Church Fathers.
The dogmatic declaration in MD is SOLELY about the Assumption of Mary.
Not only is it not dogma that Mary died it is not any kind of doctrine of the Church.

Personally, I believe Mary died first and was then assumed before her body was corrupted. However, others may believe she did not die first and I have no problem with that as Catholics are free to believe either way.

Whether she died first or not is not important.

Thistle, you are speaking as though no one ever spoke about Mary’s death before Munificentissimus Deus, paragraph 44. Pius never calls Mary’s death into any question, and actually teaches that she did die. As did all the other fathers and doctors of the Church prior. Name one doctor who said that Mary did not die. Furthermore, the liturgies of the whole Church are agreed that she died. The opinion that she did not die has no basis in fact, reason or tradition.

Fact is the dogma leaves it open for either belief and for good reason. There is “no” evidence of Marys death and She was guilty of what? The answers are none and nothing?

While its indeed true the tradition has always been taught and embraced. Its not a factual reality Mary died nor can it be factually proven and further the only reason why She would have died, is because she would have desired to. However, I see no documentation in history indicating this being left to us from Mary? In other words its assumption?

Summary link…

catholicculture.org/culture/library/view.cfm?id=469

Read for example how the conclusions were reached.

You seem to be missing the point I made. I said the only dogmatic declaration in MD is the Assumption of Mary. MD does not declare Mary died.
It is not Church dogma nor doctrine that Mary died. Catholics are FREE to believe either way and its irrelevant how often and by whom it has been discussed through the ages.
It is also not important if Mary died or did not die.

I think what we have is revelation in defined dogma which leaves the question open. There is no other defined dogma which suggests otherwise. So the question becomes why should we believe anything here but the defined dogma and then from there make the case in the theological realm. In other words the last revelation thus defined dogma is the official teaching, to suggest the Church has always taught Mary died is a blatant contradiction to the dogma itself. Like the IC this developed by revelation. So should we too suggest the Church and Popes taught otherwise historically but no defined dogma? So in my mind its a no that we should immediately conclude Mary died when the Church itself intentionally left this very question open.

Why should I take anyones word over the Bishop of Rome when I’m in agreement with him? Perhaps there are many who taught Mary indeed died and including Popes. But the dogma of the Church is the final authority on that question in Rome? And he certainly didn’t define that Mary died.

Thats my dilemma with the Assumption as far as dogma.

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