Martyrology - 8th December
On the morrow we keep the feast of the glorious Mary, Mother of God, and always a Virgin, whom the supreme Pontiff Pius IX. did upon this day solemnly define to have been by a singular gift of God preserved unstained by original sin.
Upon the same 8th day of December, were born into the better life:
At Rome, the blessed Pope Eutychian, who with his own hands buried in diverse places three hundred and forty-two martyrs, whose fellow he himself afterwards became, being crowned with martyrdom under the Emperor Numerian and buried in the cemetery of Callistus. (He succeeded Felix I (269-274); after five days' interregnum he became Pope on Jan. 3, 275, and died on Dec. 8, 283.)
At Alexandria, the holy martyr Macarius. Under the Emperor Decius the judge dealt with him in many words to persuade him to deny Christ, but as he only professed his faith the more constantly he was burnt alive, (in the year 250.)
At Trier, holy Eucharius, a disciple of the blessed Apostle Peter, and the first Bishop of that city.
In Cyprus, the holy Bishop Sophronius, who was a wonderful protector of little children, orphans, and widows, and an helper of all the poor and depressed.
In the monastery of Lisieux, the holy Abbot Romaric, who was the first man in the court of King Theodobert, but gave up the world, and became the first in monastic observance. (He was a monk of Luxeuil. He founded the Abbey of Remiremont, of which he became second Abbot in the year 627, and died on Dec. 8, 653.)
At Constantinople, the holy Hermit Patapius, famous for his graces and miracles.
At Verona, is commemorated the ordination of holy Zeno, Bishop (of that see in the fourth century.)
And elsewhere many other Holy Martyrs, Confessors and Holy virgins.
R. Thanks be to God
Meditations - Thursday in the Second Week of Advent: The Glory of God through the Incarnation
Summary of the Morrow’s Meditation
We will continue tomorrow to meditate on the glory which accrues to God from the Incarnation of the Word, and, in order to rightly understand it, we will consider: first, that without the Incarnation the world could not render to God any glory really worthy of Him; second, that through the Incarnation the world renders to God infinite glory. We will then make the resolution: first, to keep ourselves united to Jesus Christ through confidence, through love, and through frequent elevations of the heart; second, to perform all our prayers and all our actions in union with Him. Our spiritual nosegay shall be the words of the canon of the Mass: “All through Jesus Christ; all with Jesus Christ; all in Jesus Christ”.
Meditation for the Morning
Let us adore the Incarnate Word, incarnated as the centre of the world, which depends entirely upon Him as the soul and the life of every creature, as the essential mediator between heaven and earth. God has done all things for His glory (pro xvi:4), but it is the Eternal Word that procures this glory for Him in an infinite degree in all parts of the creation, upon earth as in heaven, amongst men as amongst angels. Let us then render Him, with this end in view, our praises and our thanksgivings.
Without the Incarnation the World could not Render to God any Glory really Worthy of Him.
The sole glory which is really worthy of God is an infinite glory. Now the material world is evidently incapable in itself of rendering to God this glory; it can only show itself to man in order to say to him after its manner: “Behold, how great is He who has created us, and how good is He who has done all for us. Honour and admire Him in our name and in yours”. Man himself can only imperfectly fulfil this great mission; man, whose acts are only of ex- tremely limited value, since he cannot even give birth, of himself, to one meritorious thought. What, then, O Lord, was to become of the design which Thou hadst proposed to Thyself, which was to procure for Thyself infinite glory, the only glory worthy of Thee? Evidently Thy design was on the point of becoming a failure and Thy work cut short if Thou couldst not give to creation an instrument more elevated than man, an instrument which would adore and love Thee as Thou meritest to be adored and loved, that is to say, if Thy Word did not become incarnate, since, without that, creation would have had but two results accruing from it: firstly, imperfect men and, consequently, men but little worthy of Thee; secondly, the eternal reprobation of the whole human race become sinfu its actions without merit; its prayers without virtue; its existence without an object. Everything here below would have been sad without consolation, humiliating and discouraging; nothing would have remained for man but despair, and Thou wouldst have been able to repeat with added justice, “It repenteth Me that I have created them” (gen vi:7). O Word Incarnate, how necessary wast Thou then to the glory of God! Be always with us, since we cannot, without Thee, render to God, Thy Father, any glory worthy of Him.
By the Incarnation we can Render to God Infinite Glory.
The Word Incarnate, placed essentially by His dignity at the head of creation, there becomes the centre of it, the organ, the life, the religion of heaven and earth, the meeting-place of all created beings, who, through Him, offer to God infinite homage, and address to the heav- enly Father prayers of infinite value. Oh, how great, how beautiful, how divine, is the world thus united to the Word—its Head! Material beings adore through man; man adores by Jesus Christ, who, sole worthy adorer, gathers together in His heart the homage of every creature, renders it divine in His Person by covering it with His merits, Hence results a magnificent concert of adoration, of thanksgiving, of love, of praise, and of prayer, which, rising all to- gether, from all parts of the globe, forms before the throne of God, as it were, a universal and never-interrupted hymn, as glorious to the Divine Majesty as it is profitable to man. For one single act of adoration of the Incarnate Word procures more glory to the Creator than the homage of a thousand worlds prolonged throughout eternity, even though it were to be supposed that these worlds were peopled by angels occupied solely in glorifying God. One only of these acts reconciles to God whoever desires to be reconciled (2co v:19), merits all graces and all benedictions for the earth (eph i:3). Hence it is that the Church in heaven adores God only by the eternal Amen which unites its adorations to those of the Word; and the Church on earth, following its example, offers its homage and prayers to God by Jesus Christ. What a consolation for us to be able thus to render to God infinite homage, and to address to Him prayers of infinite value, consequently all powerful over His heart! If we possessed a lively faith in this truth, we should obtain miracles (joh xvi:23). But, at the same time, what a duty is thereby imposed upon us of living and acting always in union with Jesus Christ, in perfect detachment from creatures and love of self, in order to be one with Him in all things! Is it thus that we act?
Resolutions and spiritual nosegay as above.