Father’s Column – December 27, 2020

Posted on December 27, 2020 View all news

Laudetur Jesus Christus! Gelobt sei Jesus Christus!
Sia lodato Gesù Cristo! Praised be Jesus Christ!

Now that we are formally in the Christmas Season, I wish each of you a very merry and holy Christmas! Frohe Weihnachten! Buon Natale! Christ was born to share our human nature, redeem us, and allow us to share in His Divine nature. We may have done much throughout our lives to destroy the image of the divine with us. That divine image within us from our creation or by the graces won for us in our baptism.

But through this season, may we do well to reflect upon this great dignity that has been given to us. We have so much to look forward to, to have hope in, and to strive after. This season should fill us with great hope because God has not abandoned us but has come to dwell amongst us. When we want to allow current events or situations to get us down, never forget that Christ was born for us! He has left us His Church, the Sacraments, and His teachings so that we may rise above this human condition we find ourselves and share in His divinity!

Please find portions of St. Leo the Great’s Christmas Sermon. I encourage you to read the whole thing as you may have time (https://www.newadvent.org/fathers/360321.htm)! Merry Christmas!

“Our Saviour, dearly Beloved, was born this day. Let us rejoice. Sadness is not becoming upon the Birth Day of Life Itself, which, now that the fear of death is ended, fills us with gladness, because of our own promised immortality. No one is excluded from sharing in this cheerfulness, for the reason of our joy is common to all men. Our Lord, the Conqueror of sin and death, since there was no one free from servitude, came that He might bring deliverance to all.

Let him who is sanctified rejoice, for he draws nigh to the palm. Let the sinner rejoice, since he is invited to grace. Let the Gentiles exult, for they are called to life. For the Son of God, in the fullness of time, has taken upon Himself the nature of our humanity, as the unsearchable depths of the divine counsel hath decreed, in order that the inventor of death, the devil, by that very nature which he defeated, would be himself overcome.
And in this contest that was undertaken for us, the battle was waged in accordance with a great and wondrous law of justice. For the Omnipotent God engaged in combat with His most bitter enemy, not in the strength of His own Majesty, but in our human infirmity; confronting him with our very form and nature, and sharing likewise in our mortality; but free of all stain.

Let us, therefore, give thanks, dearly Beloved, to God the Father, through the Son, in the Holy Spirit; Who, because of the exceeding great love, wherein He has loved us, has had compassion on us. And even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together in Christ [Eph. 2:5], that in Him we might be a new creature, and a new clay. Let us strip ourselves of the old man with his deeds; for being made partakers of the Birth of Christ, let us renounce the deeds of the flesh [Col. 3:9].

Acknowledge, O Christian, the dignity that is yours! Being made a partaker of the divine nature, do not by an unworthy manner of living fall back into your former abjectness of life. Be mindful of Whose Head, and of Whose Body, you are a member. Remember, that wrested from the powers of darkness, thou art now translated into the Light and the Kingdom of God. By the sacrament of baptism you have become the temple of the Holy Spirit. Do not, by evil deeds, drive out from you such a One dwelling with thee, and submit yourself again to the bondage of the devil. Because your price was the Blood of Christ; because in strictness He shall judge you Who in mercy has redeemed you, Who with the Father and the Holy Spirit, livest and reignest, world without end. Amen” – St. Leo the Great