quod pro nobis traditum est

Monday, September 29, 2008

Brethren in point of kinship

Domenico Ghirlandaio: St. Jerome in His Study (1480)

[on The Perpetual Virginity of Blessed Mary]
". . . I assert what has already been proved from the Gospel — that he spoke of the brethren of the Lord not as being sons of Mary, but brethren in the sense I have explained, that is to say, brethren in point of kinship not by nature. We are, however, spending our strength on trifles, and, leaving the fountain of truth, are following the tiny streams of opinion. Might I not array against you the whole series of ancient writers? Ignatius, Polycarp, Irenæus, Justin Martyr, and many other apostolic and eloquent men . . ."


Sunday, September 28, 2008

St. Michael the Archangel

Bless the Lord, you His angels,
Who excel in strength, who do His word,
Heeding the voice of His word.

- Introit (Psalm 103)

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Lutheran Liturgical Quote of the Day

"Besides, we grant that the angels pray for us. This is attested to by Zech. 1:12, where the angel prays, 'O Lord of hosts, how long wilt thou have no mercy on Jerusalem?' We also grant that the saints in heaven pray for the church in general, as they prayed for the church universal while they were on earth." (Apology of the Augsburg Confession, Tappert, 230:8,9)

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Liturgical Quote of the Day

"For prayer that issues from the word of God, speech is not enough: music is required. Two chants from the Christian liturgy come from biblical texts in which they are placed on the lips of angels: the Gloria, which is sung by the angels at the birth of Jesus, and the Sanctus, which according to Isaiah 6 is the cry of the seraphim who stand directly before God. Christian worship is therefore an invitation to sing with the angels, and thus to lead the word to its highest destination."

- Pope Benedict XVI (HT: Sentire cum Ecclesia)

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Liturgy in the Pericope Quote of the Day

Every Sunday one can find in the pericopes direct and/or indirect references to the liturgy. This past Sunday brings us Jesus' words:

"But go and learn what this means: ‘I desire mercy and not sacrifice.’ For I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners, to repentance.”
- Matthew 9 (St. Matthew, Apostle and Evangelist)

Monday, September 15, 2008

Holy Cross

From the Homily:

". . . it is the benefits that flow from the cross of Christ that bring us here. We are marked with the sign of the cross in holy Baptism. For us the preached message of the cross is the power of God. In the Holy Supper we proclaim the Lord's death until He comes again. Through these means we receive the forgiveness of sins and life which is God's foolishness and God's weakness and which is our salvation. Without the cross there is no forgiveness of sins and salvation, no deposit of faith, no church. All of these benefits are fed by the grain of wheat that falls onto the ground and dies . . ."

From St. Irenaeus:

"A cutting from the vine planted in the ground bears fruit in its season, or a kernel of wheat falling into the earth and becoming decomposed rises and is multiplied by the Spirit of God, who contains all things. And then, through the wisdom of God, it serves for our use when, after receiving the Word of God, it becomes the Eucharist, which is the body and blood of Christ. In the same way our bodies, being nourished by it, and deposited in the earth and suffering decomposition there, shall rise at their appointed time . . . This is so because the strength of God is made perfect in weakness in order that we may never become puffed up, as if we had life from ourselves . . ."

(Against Heresies 5.2.3; cited in ACCS, IVb, 60)

Friday, September 12, 2008

long for this life

"Let us learn therefore, beloved, to ask of God things which are worthy of being asked for. For such things, I mean the things of this life, in whatever way they touch us, will bring us no harm. For if we are rich, it is only here we enjoy the pleasures of riches; and if fall into poverty, we shall suffer nothing dreadful. For the bright things of this life or the dark have little power to give us either pleasure or pain. Both are of little account, and swiftly pass away. And so they are rightly called a way; for they pass by, and do not long endure. But the things to come endure without end; punishment and Kingdom alike. For these let us have great concern: that we escape the one, and gain the other. What profit is there in present delight; here today, tomorrow fled? Today a shining flower; tomorrow scattered dust. Today a bright fire; tomorrow dead ashes.

"But it is not so with spiritual things. They remain ever shining, ever flowering, each day a greater joy. These riches are never lost, never given up, never come to an end, never cause anxiety nor envy nor blame. They neither destroy the body nor corrupt the soul, nor awaken jealousy, nor provoke malice; as with earthly riches. This glory does not lead a man to senseless folly; does not inflame him, does not come to an end, does not fade. The rest and the delight of heaven remains, it goes on, ever unchanging and immortal. For it has no limit; it has no end.

"Let us, I beseech you, long for this life. For if we long for this life, we shall place no value on the things of the present time; rather we shall despise them all and laugh at them. And even should we be invited as a guest of the king, and than this nothing seems more desirable, yet, having this hope within us, we should think nothing of it: for those held fast in the desire of heavenly things, must hold this of no importance. For whatever has an end, must not be too much sought after. All that ceases, and is but today, and tomorrow is not, even something very great, let it be to you as something very small and of little value.

"Let us therefore not cling to things that even now are fleeing from us, but to the things that remain and endure, so that we may be blessed with them for ever, by the grace and loving kindness of Jesus Christ our Lord, through Whom and with Whom be there glory to the Father, together with the Holy Spirit, now and forever, and throughout all ages and ages. Amen."

- St. John Chrysostom (Homily XLIV; cited in Toal, Vol. IV, 110)

Thursday, September 04, 2008

our own resurrection


Carlo Saraceni, c 1610
Galleria Nazionale d'Arte Antica, Roma

"We possess therefore the hope of our own resurrection, when we think of the glory of our Head. But so that no one in his secret heart might say: 'Christ rose from the dead because He was at the same time both God and man, that the death He suffered in His humanity, He overcame in His Divinity; but we, who are simple men, we cannot rise from this sentence of death,' at the time of Christ's Resurrection there arose, many bodies of the saints that had slept (Mt. xxvii. 52). And this took place, that He might give us in Himself a proof of our own resurrection, and confirm this by the resurrection of others who were in nature like us; so that where man might despair of attaining to what had taken place in God made man, he could expect this to happen in himself, when he knew it had happened in those whom he could not doubt were men like himself."

- Gregory the Great on The Resurrection of the Body (Job xix. 25-27) (Toal, IV, 124)

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

the gene of unfaithfulness

We are hearing that a gene has been discovered that may explain the unfaithfulness of men. Now it seems a similar gene may be discovered in women down the road. The problem with sin is that it is an equal opportunity employer and we are too quick to deny its existence.