Sunday within the Octave of the Nativity of Our Lord
The mass tells us that "the Word that came down from heaven during the night" (Introit) of Christmas is "the Son of God who has come that we might participate of His heritage and receive the adoption of sons" (Epistle). Before His coming, man was as "a child who during his minority differeth nothing from a servant" (Epistle). On the contrary, now that the New Law has emancipated him from the tutorship of the Old Law "he is no longer a servant but a son" (Epistle).
In revealing to us this supernatural filiation of Christ, which affects our souls more especially at this season of Christmas, the liturgy makes the Divinity under the aspect of Paternity resplendent in our eyes. Also, the worship of the sons of God is summed up in that word spoken with Jesus, "Father!" (Epistle).
The Gospel also discloses to us the glorious mission which the future has in store for this Child, the manifestation of which begins today in the Temple.
"It is the King" (Gradual), "whose reign" (Alleluia) "will reach the very depths of the heart" (Gospel). For all it will be a touchstone, a stumbling block for those who will persecute Him (Communion), a cornerstone "for many in Israel" (Gospel).
Dum medium silentium tenerent omnia, et nox in suo cursu medium iter haberet, omnipotens sermo tuus, Domine, de coelis, a regalibus sedibus venit. * Dominus regnavit, decorem indutus est: indutus est Dominus fortitudinem, et praecinxit se.
While all things were in quiet silence, and the night was in the midst of her course, thy Almighty Word, O Lord, came down from thy royal throne. * The Lord hath reigned, he is clothed with beauty: the Lord is clothed with strength, and hath girded himself.
(Wisdom 18:14-15 and Psalm 92:1 from the Introit of Mass)
Omnipotens sempiterne Deus, dirige actus nostros in beneplacito tuo: ut in nomine dilecti Filii tui mereamur bonis operibus abundare.
O Almighty and Eternal God, regulate our actions according to thy divine will: that in the name of thy beloved Son, we may abound in good works.
Concede, quaesumus, omnipotens Deus: ut nos Unigeniti tui nova per carnem nativitas liberet, quos sub peccati jugo vetusta servitus tenet.
Grant, we beseech thee, O Almighty God, that we who groan under the old captivity of sin, may be freed therefrom by the new Birth of thine Only Begotten Son.
(Commemoration of Christmas)
Sequel to the holy Gospel according to Luke.
At that time: Joseph, and Mary the Mother of Jesus, were wondering at those things which were spoken concerning him. And Simeon blessed them, and said to Mary his Mother: Behold, this Child is set for the fall and for the resurrection of many in Israel: and for a sign which shall be contradicted: and thine own soul a sword shall pierce, that out of many hearts thoughts may be revealed. And there was one Anna, a prophetess, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Aser: she was far advanced in years, and had lived with her husband seven years from her virginity. And she was a widow until four score and four years: who departed not from the temple, by fastings and prayers serving day and night. Now she at the same hour, coming in, confessed to the Lord, and spoke of him to all that looked for the redemption of Israel. And after they had performed all things according to the law of the Lord, they returned into Galilee, to their city Nazareth. And the Child grew and waxed strong, full of wisdom: and the grace of God was in him.
(St Luke 2:33-40)
Friday, 30 December 2016
29th December. Within the Octave of the Nativity.
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