Wednesday, January 04, 2006

On Christmas

What to say about Christmas? Every year I rant about how the Catholic understanding of Christmas refers to much more than just the birthday of Jesus. Not only is it for us the celebration of the coming of the promised messiah, but it is the fruition, if you will, of that most glorious event of the Incarnation, wherein God, the Creator of the Universe, became a human being, becoming present in the womb of a woman and being born into time as a tiny babe. Do we really appreciate the significance of what we're celebrating? It's quite literally earth-shattering, beyond reason. Yet, we believe that it happened. How can we appropriately capture a mystery so profound as this?

I like how the Latin antiphon o admirabile commercium expresses the mystery:
O admirabile commercium! Creator generis humani animatum corpus sumens, de Virgine nasci dignatus est; et procedens homo sine semine, largitus est nobis suam deitatem.
I'll shut up now..!


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