Dormition of the Virgin Mary the Theotokos
Translation of Her Body into Heaven
This Orthodox feast is not the assumption of Mary into heaven as is celebrated in the Roman Church. It is about her death and the salvation of her soul. We learn that Mary died as all people die because she had a mortal human nature affected by the corruption of this world. The Church proclaims that Mary needed to be saved by Christ just as all of us are saved from trials, sufferings, and death of this world. Having truly died, she was raised by her Son as the "Mother of Life" and already participates in the eternal life of paradise which is prepared and promised to all who "hear the word of God and keep it." (Luke 11:27-28) Finally, we celebrate the fact that what happens to Mary happens to all who imitate her holy life of humility, obedience and love.
The ascension of Mary was not recorded in the Gospels or Epistles but has been revealed to the Church. The glorification of the virgin-Mother is a result of her voluntary condescension of the Son who is incarnate of her and Made “Son of Man”, capable of dying. Mother of God was taken into heaven not having to wait for the General resurrection of the Last Judgment. This feast is a second mysterious Pascha. This event is important because it is seen as the firstfruits of the resurrection of the faithful that will occur at the Second Coming of Christ.