On the Nativity

Thursday, December 25, 2008 \AM\.\Thu\.

pope-saint-leo-the-great

I. The Truths of the Incarnation Never Suffer from Being Repeated
The things which are connected with the mystery of to-day’s solemn feast are well known to you, dearly-beloved, and have frequently been heard: but as yonder visible light affords pleasure to eyes that are unimpaired, so to sound hearts does the Saviour’s nativity give eternal joy; and we must not keep silent about it, though we cannot treat of it as we ought.

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Merry Christmas!

Thursday, December 25, 2008 \AM\.\Thu\.

"Nativity" Bernardino Fasolo - 1526

“Let every heart prepare Him room …”


A Proclamation

Wednesday, December 24, 2008 \PM\.\Wed\.

nativity

The twenty-fifth day of December.

  • In the five thousand one hundred and ninety-ninth year of the creation of the world
    from the time when God in the beginning created the heavens and the earth;
  • the two thousand nine hundred and fifty-seventh year after the flood;
  • the two thousand and fifteenth year from the birth of Abraham;
  • the one thousand five hundred and tenth year from Moses
    and the going forth of the people of Israel from Egypt;
  • the one thousand and thirty-second year from David’s being anointed king;
  • in the sixty-fifth week according to the prophecy of Daniel;
  • in the one hundred and ninety-fourth Olympiad;
  • the seven hundred and fifty-second year from the foundation of the city of Rome;
  • the forty second year of the reign of Octavian Augustus;
  • the whole world being at peace,
  • in the sixth age of the world,
  • Jesus Christ the eternal God and Son of the eternal Father,
    desiring to sanctify the world by his most merciful coming,
    being conceived by the Holy Spirit,
    and nine months having passed since his conception,
  • was born in Bethlehem of Judea of the Virgin Mary,
    being made flesh.
  • The Nativity of our Lord Jesus Christ according to the flesh.

  • O Holy Night

    Wednesday, December 24, 2008 \PM\.\Wed\.

    For this Holy Night, O Holy Night sung by Renee Fleming.


    A Taste of Christmas

    Wednesday, December 24, 2008 \AM\.\Wed\.

    One of the things I love most about our country is that it is not a state built to give expression to a particular “nationality” in the sense that swept the world like an plague in the 19th and 20th centuries. Our country shares a set of political ideals and cultural touchstones, but it is also a glorious mix of different traditions which we, as a nation of immigrants, have brought with us and continued to develop here.

    In honor of which — and because it seemed to me that perhaps we could use a “getting to know each other” thread around here — I take the liberty of cross posting the following from my personal blog:

    The feast of the nativity of Our Lord has traditionally been a time for feasting and the gathering of family and friends. And since taste and smell are powerful hooks for memory, many of us have intense connections to various Christmas foods and drinks. The other holiday here in the US which is heavily food-centric is Thanksgiving, yet with a few familial variations, the Thanksgiving food palette is pretty well defined. Christmas food traditions, however, are pretty various.

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    Rise You That Sleep

    Wednesday, December 24, 2008 \AM\.\Wed\.

    saint-augustine

    “It is called the Lord’s birthday when the wisdom of God presented itself to us as an infant, and the Word of God without words uttered the flesh as its voice. And yet the hidden divinity was signified to the wise men by the evidence of the heavens, and announced to the shepherds by the voice of an angel. And so we celebrate this day every year with great solemnity, because on it was fulfilled the prophecy which said,

    Truth has sprung from the earth, and Justice has looked forth from heaven (Ps 84:12).

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    AntiChrist and Advent

    Tuesday, December 23, 2008 \AM\.\Tue\.

    newman

    Antichrist and Advent, an odd combination?  Cardinal Newman didn’t think so before his conversion.  He preached a series of Advent sermons on the anti-Christ which were published in Tract 83 in 1838.  I have always been struck by this passage:

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