In El Greco's painting, Mary rises to heaven with her arms extended in the orans position, the praying gesture, echoed in the hands of the Apostles, who learn through prayer the significance of what has happened. This attitude of prayer has characterized Mary's whole life, so it marks her transitus as well, and it distinguishes the Church which is uniquely represented in her person. In its original location over an altar, this painting was partly obscured by a tabernacle, and the figure of Mary appeared to hover above this. Mary gave herself completely to God all her life, so God was able to take a body from her body. In return, He raises her body to heaven. In its Eucharistic setting, this painting witnesses to the marvelous bond connecting the Body of Christ, the body of Mary, and the body of believers -- the Church which is also the body of Christ and which has Mary for her Mother.