Author Archives: damselofthefaith

About damselofthefaith

I'm a young traditional Catholic woman doing my small part to fight for the true Catholic Faith on my blog.

+Vigano urges McCarrick to repent in open letter

Featured Image

There is hope until the last breath.  This letter speaks for itself.

Letter to McCarrick

Dear Archbishop McCarrick,

As has been reported as a news by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, the accusations against you for crimes against minors and abuses against seminarians are going to be examined and judged very soon with an administrative procedure.

No matter what decision the supreme authority of the Church takes in your case, what really matters and what has saddened those who love you and pray for you is the fact that throughout these months you haven’t given any sign of repentance. I am among those who are praying for your conversion, that you may repent and ask pardon of your victims and the Church.

Time is running out, but you can confess and repent of your sins, crimes and sacrileges, and do so publicly, since they have themselves become public. Your eternal salvation is at stake.

But something else of great importance is also at stake. You, paradoxically, have at your disposal an immense offer of great hope for you from the Lord Jesus; you are in a position to do great good for the Church. In fact, you are now in a position to do something that has become more important for the Church than all of the good things you did for her throughout your entire life. A public repentance on your part would bring a significant measure of healing to a gravely wounded and suffering Church. Are you willing to offer her that gift? Christ died for us all when we were still sinners (Rom. 5: 8). He only asks that we respond by repenting and doing the good that we are given to do. The good that you are in a position to do now is to offer the Church your sincere and public repentance.  Will you give the Church that gift?

I implore you, repent publicly of your sins, so as to make the Church rejoice and present yourself before the tribunal of Our Lord cleansed by His blood. Please, do not make His sacrifice on the cross void for you. Christ, Our Good Lord, continues to love you. Put your entire trust in His Sacred Heart. And pray to Mary, as I and many others are doing, asking her to intercede for the salvation of your soul.

“Maria Mater Gratiae, Mater Misericordiae, Tu nos ab hoste protege et mortis hora suscipe”. Mary Mother of the Grace, Mother of Mercy, protect us from the enemy and welcome us in the hour of death.

Your brother in Christ,

+ Carlo Maria Viganò

Sunday, January 13, 2019
The Baptism of the Lord
Saint Hilary of Poitiers

Advertisements

800,000 in procession

This display of faith is definitely a welcome sight in the Church today, that indeed some semblance of Catholicism still lives in the people.

http://www.asianews.it/news-en/Manila,-800-thousand-Catholics-on-the-way-to-the-Black-Nazarene-45922.html

Manila (AsiaNews) – More than 800,000 Catholics flocked to the streets of central Manila this morning to take part in the traditional procession of the Black Nazarene, a century-old wooden statue of Christ. Every year, the translation of the sacred sculpture from its original site – the church of St. Nicholas from Tolentino – to the parish of Quiapo concludes a novena (December 31-January 9) and sees the participation of millions of faithful gathered in prayer, to ask a personal grace or miracle.

In the Philippines, over 82% of the 105 million people are Catholics. Among the celebrations of a religious nature, the procession of the “Black Nazarene” is one of the most famous and popular. The statue of the Black Nazarene represents Jesus bent under the weight of the Cross. It was brought to Manila by an Augustinian Spanish priest in 1607 on board a ship from Mexico. According to tradition, the boat caught fire during the journey, but the image of Christ miraculously escaped the fire taking on the black color. The procession recalls the first movement of the statue, which took place on January 9th 1767.

Along the whole route (seven kilometers) of the Translation the faithful flock to touch or kiss the sculpture as a sign of devotion. In the middle of the morning, the Philippine Red Cross claims to have assisted more than 600 people with breathing problems, fainting and bruising. Three people were transported to the hospital. To prevent the toll from escalating, this year the organizers reiterated to the faithful that it is not necessary to climb over other devotees to honor the Black Nazarene.

Impressive security measures are ordered by the authorities. The head of the Filipino police, Oscar Albayalde, claims to have deployed more than 7 thousand agents to ensure the security of the event, while mobile phone networks have been deactivated as a precaution against remote-controlled explosive devices.

“In the Translation of the Black Nazarene, the devotion of the Filipino people finds its maximum expression. There is nothing like this in the world ” Fr. Sebastiano D’Ambra, missionary of the Pontifical Institute for Foreign Missions (PIME) tells AsiaNews. For over 40 years the priest has carried out his pastoral work on the island of Mindanao, where in 1984 he founded Silsilah, a movement for Islamic-Christian dialogue.

“Since the days of Spanish domination,” says the priest, “the Holy Week and the Passion of Christ have assumed great importance in the life of the nation in the Philippines. The image of the suffering Nazarene has thus entered the heart of spirituality and popular religiosity. Many people, among the millions of devotees who participate each year in the celebrations, attend the Translation to fulfill a promise made “.

“I know the event well – concludes the priest – because in the past I helped with the organization. Furthermore, one of our groups operates in the parish of Quiapo. In fact, near the church there is a mosque, the Golden Mosque. Years ago, the parish priest asked us to work together for interreligious dialogue with the local Islamic community. I often go to the parish and on every occasion I find long lines of faithful who pay homage to the statue, even with a caress or a prayer. Every first Friday of the month the church is even more crowded and the priests celebrate a mass every hour of the day, from five in the morning until seven in the evening “.

Better to live as an atheist

Image result for pope francis

So now Francis advocates atheism. Just unbelievable.  Whatever happened to admonishing the sinner & helping him to correct his faults & sins? Now it’s better to live without recourse to God or the Sacraments?

Why be surprised at the blasphemies that come forth from the mouth of this man?  You know what Jesus Christ said: you do your father’s work.

https://onepeterfive.com/pope-francis-rails-against-hypocritical-christians-better-to-live-as-an-atheist/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+Onepeterfive+%28OnePeterFive%29

VATICAN CITY, January 2, 2019 – Pope Francis addressed a crowd of faithful with some jarring remarks during his first Wednesday Audience of 2019. Speaking in the Paul VI Audience Hall, this morning, the pope focused on two reoccurring themes of his pontificate: hypocritical Christians and the “revolutionary” nature of the Gospel.

“How many times do we see the scandal of those people who go to church and stay there all day or go every day and then live hating others or talking badly about people? This is a scandal – it is better not to go to church: better to live as an atheist,” the pope admonished.

Reading from his prepared statements, the pope continued, “The Christian is not one who commits himself to be better than others: he knows that he is a sinner like everyone else.”

According to the Italian media outlet La Repubblica, reporting from the audience hall, the pope continued to read from his prepared texts, “where there is Gospel, there is revolution: the Gospel does not leave us quiet, it pushes us: it is revolutionary.” Pointing to the Our Father, he would conclude that St Matthew placed Jesus’ prayer “at the center of the mountain’s discourse[.] … Blessed are the poor, the meek, the merciful, the humble people of heart: It is the revolution of the Gospel.”

The Roman pontiff’s use of the term “revolution” harkens to a recent LifeSite exclusive with Chilean author José Antonio Ureta on his book, Pope Francis’s Paradigm Shift: Continuity or Rupture in the Mission of the Church? In his full interview (found here), Mr. Ureta would explain the concerning trend of some in the Vatican – to include Pope Francis – to label attempts at change in the Church as “revolutions” or “paradigm shifts.” Such terms have found their place in the theological narratives of Pope Francis and his close advisers.

To note, Pope Francis’s prepared statements, today, are the first since news shook the international press of the joint resignation of Vatican spokesman Greg Burke, and his deputy, Paloma García Ovejero, over the New Year.

The Birth & Poverty of Christ

 

Image result for nativity of christ

The following is taken from Thomas a Kempis’ great work “The Imitation of Christ.”

Of the Birth and Poverty of the Lord Jesus

Bless, and give thanks to Thee, O Lord Jesus Christ, the Only-begotten of the Father, born before all worlds, Who, of Thy unspeakable condescension, didst vouchsafe to be born in a filthy stable, and for love of holy poverty, to be laid in a narrow manger. I praise Thee, most loving Jesus, for Thy illustrious origin; for Thy glorious birth of the pure Virgin Mary; for Thy poverty; and for Thy humility in lying in so poor and mean a crib.

Who can meditate as he should on the thought of the most High God, so demeaning Himself for our sake? O what thanks does not the human race owe to Thee, Who, for its redemption, didst choose to lie in a narrow manger! O boundless tenderness, O wondrous sweetness, O sweetest love – God born a helpless babe, wrapped in mean swaddling clothes, laid in a narrow manger, with brute beasts surrounding Him! O humility passing human thought, that the Lord of all lords should deign to become the fellow servant of His own servants! But, O my Lord, and my God, it seemed to Thee too small a thing, that Thou Who art my Creator shouldst also be my Father; Thou didst even stoop to become my Brother, and to be made flesh of my flesh, taking in very truth my nature upon Thee, sin only excepted. O Birth, outside the course of nature, triumphing over the natural order of our births, and assuaging by Divine power the tears which we shed at them, in order that, by It, our nature might be restored!

O how blessed and how lovely was Thy Nativity, O sweetest Jesus, Child of the illustrious Virgin, Who, by Thy birth from the womb of Thy highly exalted Mother Mary, dost make good the faults of our birth, renew our condition, cancel our condemnation, blot out the handwriting of the decree which was against us; that so, if a man is tempted to repine at being born of Adam’s stock, he may rejoice in Thy undefiled Nativity, and in the most blessed trust that by Thy grace he has been born again.

I thank Thee, for Thy self-chosen and glorious Nativity, O Lord Jesus Christ, the only-begotten Son of God, by Whom we have access to that Grace in which we stand, and trust in the hope restored to us from above of the glory of the sons of God. Thou art the pledge of our redemption: Thou art the everlasting hope of all men; to Thee do we sinners humbly fly for refuge – to Thee, Who didst come to seek us, when as yet we knew Thee not. O sweet and holy Infancy, from which alone true innocency comes to human hearts; by which, however old a man may be, he may go back to blessed infancy, and may be made like to Thee, not by the shrinking of his limbs, but by the lowliness of his mind, and the holiness of his life!

O most gentle Jesus, Who, that Thou mightest give to all men an example of a holy life, and the means of everlasting salvation, didst will to be born of Mary the Virgin, at the hour of midnight, grant that I may tread in the sacred footsteps of Thy humility and poverty! Grant that I may join, in giving praise and thanks to Thee, the Angels and the whole company of the heavenly host, whom Thou didst cause to be the joyful heralds of Thy Nativity!

Feast of the Circumcision of Our Lord

Image result for circumcision of our lord

A Happy & Blessed New Year 2019 to all of my readers!

New Years Day: The Feast of the Circumcision of Our Lord
by Leonard Goffine, 1871

Why do we call this New Year’s Day? 

Because the civil year begins on this day, as the ecclesiastical does on the first Sunday in Advent.

What ought we to do on this day?

We must dedicate the New Year to the service of God, in order that, assisted by His grace, we may both begin and end it to His honor, and our own sanctification.

Why do we wish each other a happy New Year? 

To renew love and harmony, and to fulfil an obligation of charity by wishes for each other’s happiness and prosperity.

What feast does the Church celebrate on this day? 

The circumcision of Christ, at which He received the name of Jesus. “But when the fulness of time was come, God sent His Son, made of a woman, made under the law, that He might redeem them that were under the law” (Gal. iv. 4, 5).

Aspiration.:

O my Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, I thank Thee for having to-day shed Thy blood for the first time for me. Grant me, I beseech Thee, the grace of mortifying, circumcising for Thy love, my eyes, ears, lips, hands, feet, and all my sensual appetites, that I may not see, hear, speak, touch, wish, or do any evil. Amen.

Prayer: O God, Who by the fruitful virginity of the blessed Mary hast given to mankind the rewards of eternal salvation, grant, we beseech Thee, that we may experience her intercession for us, through whom we have received the Author of life, Our Lord Jesus Christ, Who liveth and reigneth, etc.

GOSPEL–Luke ii. 21: At that time: After eight days were accomplished that the child should be circumcised: His name was called Jesus, which was called by the angel before He was conceived in the womb.

Why was Christ circumcised the eighth day of His birth?

1. So that by fulfilling the Jewish law, He might teach us patience and obedience to the law of God, and to His holy Church. 2. To show His infinite love to us in the very first days of His life.

Who gave Him the name of Jesus?

God Himself gave it to Him, Who came to save the world and sanctify us, for Jesus means Saviour. It is, therefore, that holy and powerful name, whereby alone we can be saved (Acts iv. 12).

What power has this name?

A divine power; for in this name the apostles cast out devils and cured the sick (Mark xvi. 17, 18), as, for instance, the lame man who lay at the gate of the temple (Acts iii. 2-6). Through this name we receive from God whatever is helpful towards our salvation (John xiv. 13). It is well, therefore, to call on this holy name in adversities, in doubts, and in great temptations, particularly such as are hostile to purity. Even when we are so unhappy as to fall into sin, the remembrance of this holy name may bring us back to virtue, for it is as oil which enlightens, nourishes, and heals (Canticles i. 2, 3).

How must we speak this holy name, that its virtue may be felt?

With the greatest devotion and veneration, and with unbounded confidence; for, as St. Paul says, “in the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those who are in heaven, on earth, and under the earth” (Phil. ii. 10). How sinful, therefore, is it in some to speak this name almost at every word, frivolously and disrespectfully; a habit which, in this country particularly, is so widely and fatally prevalent.

Prayer for the New Year

O Almighty God, now that we have lived to see another year, we thank Thy goodness and Thy incomprehensible mercy, that, from the moment of our birth, we have escaped so many dangers which have threatened our health and life. Would that we had never abused the precious time of our life to sin! but, alas! it is done, and we therefore pray Thee, through Thy Son, and through the precious blood He this day shed in His circumcision, to look, not upon the multitude of our sins, but upon Thy infinite mercy; we promise to be henceforth pious, just, and virtuous; strengthen us in our weakness; increase in us faith, hope, and charity; keep us, by Thy powerful grace, from all sin, dangers, temptations, and adversities of soul and body; enable us, we beseech Thee, to offer up to Thee, from this day henceforth till the hour of our death, all our senses, thoughts, words, and deeds; to subject them all to Thy holy will; to oppose successfully every evil habit, and to practice every virtue. Grant, O Father, that we, living and dying in Thy only true faith, may enjoy in Thy kingdom, where one day is better than a thousand upon earth, an everlasting New Year of eternal happiness, and that we may praise Thee with all Thy angels and saints, forever and ever. Amen.

The Two Advents of Our Lord Jesus Christ

Related image

An incredible sermon that I discovered given by Blessed Jacobus of Voragine:

The Advent of Our Lord is celebrated for four weeks to signify that His coming is fourfold: He came to us in the flesh, He comes into our hearts, He comes to us at death, and He will come at the Last Judgment. The fourth week is not completed, because the glory of the elect to be bestowed at the last coming of Our Lord will never end.

While the coming of Our Lord is fourfold, the Church turns especially to two of them, the coming of Our Lord in the flesh and His coming at the Last Judgment. Thus, the Advent fast is in part a fast of rejoicing because of Christ’s coming in the flesh, the Incarnation; at the same time it is in part a fast of contrition, looking to the supreme coming of Christ at the Last Judgment.

I – Regarding Our Lord’s coming in the flesh, two things should be considered: how it is opportune and how it is useful.

1. It is opportune first, because man, condemned by nature to have an incomplete knowledge of God, had fallen into the worst errors of idolatry and was reduced to cry out, “Enlighten my eyes.”‘ Second, Our Lord came in the fullness of time as St. Paul says in the Epistle to the Galatians. Third, He came when the entire world was sick, as St. Augustine says: “The great Physician came when mankind was lying ill through the whole world.”

This is why the Church, in the seven antiphons sung before the Lord’s Nativity, remembers the different kinds of illnesses and how opportune this divine remedy is. Before the Son of God came in the flesh, we were ignorant and blind, subject to eternal punishment, slaves of the devil, shackled by our sinful habits, enveloped in darkness, exiled from our true motherland. This is why those antiphons proclaim Our Lord as our Master, our Redeemer, our Liberator, our Guide, our Enlightener and our Savior.

2. Regarding the usefulness of the coming of Christ, diverse authorities define it in different ways. Jesus Christ Himself in the Gospel of St. Luke tells us that He came for seven reasons: to console the poor, to cure the afflicted, to liberate the captives, to enlighten the ignorant, to forgive the sinners, to redeem the human genre and to recompense each one according to his merits. And St. Bernard says: “We suffer from a threefold illness: We are easy to seduce, slow to act and weak to resist. Hence the coming of Our Lord is necessary first to enlighten our blindness and second to help our weakness.”

II – Regarding the second coming, that is, the Last Judgment, we should consider the circumstances that will precede it and those that will accompany it.

 

1. Three kinds of circumstances will precede the Last Judgment: terrible signs, the imposture of the Antichrist, and an immense fire on the earth.

A. Five types of signs will precede the Last Judgment for, as St. Like says: “There will be signs in the sun, moon and stars; on the earth, nations will be in anguish and perplexity at the roaring and tossing of the sea. (21:25) We can find a commentary on all these things in the Apocalypse.

St. Jerome, in his turn, found 15 signs preceding the Last Judgment in the annals of the Hebrews:

  • On the first day, the ocean will rise above the mountains and will stand upright, immobile like a wall;
  • On the second day, the ocean will sink so low that one will barely be able to see it;
  • On the third day, sea monsters will appear on the waves and will utter roars that will rise up to heaven;
  • On the fourth day, the water in the ocean will boil;
  • On the fifth day, the trees and all plants will exude a dew of blood;
  • On the sixth day, all the buildings will fall down;
  • On the seventh day, the stones will break into four pieces, which will clash against one another;
  • On the eighth day, a universal earthquake will lay every man and animal low on the ground;
  • On the ninth day, the earth will be leveled and the mountains and hills will be reduced to dust;
  • On the tenth day, men will leave their hidden places and wander like madmen, without being able to speak to each other;
  • On the eleventh day, the bones of the dead will come out of their graves;
  • On the twelfth day, the stars will fall from the firmament;
  • On the thirteenth day, all living beings will die to be resurrected afterwards with the dead;
  • On the fourteenth day, the sky and earth will burn;
  • On the fifteenth day, there will be a new heaven and a new earth, and all will be resurrected.

B. The Last Judgment will be preceded by the imposture of the Antichrist, who will try to deceive men in four ways:

  • By a false interpretation of the Scriptures trying to prove that he is the promised Messiah;
  • By the working of miracles;
  • By the distribution of gifts;
  • By the infliction of tortures.

C. The Last Judgment will be preceded by a violent fire, lit by God himself to renew the world, to punish the reprobate and to bring attention to the group of the elect.

2. Regarding the circumstances that will accompany the Last Judgment, the first to be named is the separation of the good from the evil ones. For it is known that the Judge will come in the Valley of Josaphat and place the good at His right and evil ones at His left. This does not signify, as St. Jerome observes, that all men will have to be in that small valley, but only that it will be the center of the Judgment. This does not exclude that God, if He so desires, may place in that space an infinite number of men [since their resurrected bodies will no longer take up space].

Next comes the question of knowing the categories into which men will be divided when the Final Judgment comes. St. Gregory admits four categories: two for the reprobates and two for the elect. Among the reprobates will be those who will be condemned and those who were already condemned, about whom it was said: “The one who does not believe, will be judged previously.” Among the elect will be those who will judge the others sitting alongside the Judge.

At the Final Judgment the signs of the Passion will be present: the Cross, the instruments of the Passion and His scars; St John Chrysostom says that “The Cross and His scars will be more brilliant than the rays of the sun.”

The Judge will be inflexibly severe. He will bend neither from fear, since He is Almighty, nor from gifts, because He is richness itself, nor from hatred because He is goodness itself, nor from love because He is justice itself, nor from error because He is wisdom itself. Against this Wisdom neither the allegations of lawyers, nor the sophisms of philosophers, nor the phrases of orators, nor the ruses of hypocrites will prevail.

The Judge will be as severe as the prosecutor will be implacable. In other words, the sinner will face three prosecutors: the Devil, sin and the entire world, because, as St. Chrysostom says: “On that day, sky and earth, water, sun and moon, day and night, the whole world will raise against us before God, in testimony of our sins.”

Three witnesses will also testify against us, all three infallible: First, God, who said to us through the voice of Jeremy: “I am at the same time judge and witness;” second, our conscience, and third, our guardian Angel, for we read in the book of Job: “Heavens (that is, the Angels) will reveal his iniquity.”

Finally, the sentence will be irrevocable. Indeed, the sentence is irrevocable for three reasons: the excellence of the Judge, the evidence of the crime; the impossibility of reversing the chastisement. For in the sentence pronounced against us in the Last Judgment, there will be no King, Emperor or Pope to whom we can appeal the judgment pronounced against us.

Merry Christmas!

36475-1225christmas23

Tonight is born in the city of David, Christ the Lord, the King of Heaven and the Prince of Peace. He who the world cannot contain because he is God, the Creator of the Universe, was placed in a lowly manager, dependent on the love of two parents.  This is the great humility of our God. He who has the power to vanquish death allowed himself to be born into this world as one of us, making him subject to death, which He endured for our sake. He was born to die. This little Baby had always before his mind, from the first moment of his conception, His mission – to save mankind from the fires of hell. For this was He born and this should be the prime subject of our meditation this Christmas season. From myself, I wish all my readers & their loved ones a blessed, holy & merry Christmas!

A beautiful sermon from St. Bonaventure:

Our Savior, dearly beloved, is born today; let us rejoice. It is not right to be sad today, the natal day of Life–He Who has dispelled the fear of mortality and brought us to the joy of promised eternity. Let no man be cut off from a share in this rejoicing. The cause of our joy is common to every man, because our Lord, the destoryer of sin and death, Who finds none guiltless, comes to free all. Let the holy exult, he draws near his palm; let the sinner rejoice, he is invited to pardon; let the Gentile be quickened, he is called to life. For the Son of God, in the fulness of that time which the unsearchable height of Divine Wisdom decreed, assumed human nature to reconcile it with its Author, and conquer the devil, the inventor of death, through that flesh which he had conquered.

In this conflict, which He joined for our sake, Our Lord entered the field of battle with a great and wonderful fairness. Although He was the almighty Lord, He met our bitter enemy not with the strength of His majesty, but with the weakness of our flesh. He brought against him the self-same form as ours; the self-same nature as our nature–but in him, without sin. Not of this Nativity were written the words applied to all other men: Not one is free from defilement, no, not the child whose life on earth is but one day. Into this singular birth passed none of the concupiscences of the flesh, nor followed any consequences of the law of sin. A Virgin of the royal stem of David is chosen, and when she was to become pregnant with the Sacred Child, Who was both God and Man, she conceived Him in her soul before she conceived Him in her body. Lest the stupendous mystery might make her afraid, since she had no knowledge of the Divine plan, she learned by the message of an Angel what was to be done in her by the Holy Ghost. She believed she would be the Mother of God, yet remain a virgin inviolate.

Therefore, dearly beloved, let us give thanks to God the Father, through His Son in the Holy Ghost, Who for His exceeding charity, wherewith he loved us, hath had mercy on us, and even when we were dead in sins hath quickened us together in Christ, that in Him we might be a new creature and a new handiwork. Therefore, let us put off the old man with his works, and having become sharers in the Sonship of Christ, renounce the deeds of the flesh. Learn, O Christian, how great is your dignity! You have been made a partaker in the divine nature. Scorn to return to your former vileness through an evil way of life. Remember of Whose body you are a member, and Who is its head. Remember that you have been snatched from the power of darkness, and transported into light and the kingdom of God.

_____________________________________

Christmas Eve Prayer
from the Liturgical Year, 1910

O Divine Infant! we, too, must needs join our voices with those of the Angels, and sing with them: Glory be to God! and Peace to men! We cannot restrain our tears at hearing this history of Thy Birth. We have followed Thee in Thy journey from Nazareth to Bethlehem; we have kept close to Mary and Joseph on the whole journey; we have kept sleepless watch during this holy Night, waiting Thy coming. Praise be to Thee, sweetest Jesus, for Thy mercy! and love from all hearts, for Thy tender love of us! Our eyes are riveted on that dear Crib, for our Salvation is there; and there we recognise Thee as the Messias foretold in those sublime Prophecies, which Thy Spouse the Church has been repeating to us, in her solemn prayers of this Night. Thou art the Mighty God — the Prince of Peace — the Spouse of our souls — our Peace — our Saviour — our Bread of Life. And now, what shall we offer thee? A good Will?

Ah! dear Lord! Thou must form it within us; Thou must increase it, if Thou hast already given it; that thus, we may become Thy Brethren by grace, as we already are by the human nature Thou hast assumed. But, O Incarnate Word! this Mystery of Thy becoming Man, works within us a still higher grace: — it makes us, as Thy Apostle tells us, partakers of that divine nature, which is inseparable with Thee in the midst of all Thy humiliations. Thou hast made us less than the Angels, in the scale of creation; but, in Thy Incarnation, Thou hast made us Heirs of God, and Joint-Heirs with Thine own divine Self! Never permit us, through our own weaknesses and sins, to degenerate from this wonderful gift, whereby Thy Incarnation exalted us, and oh! dear Jesus, to what a height! Amen.