Sunday, September 07, 2008

Meditation for the Feast of the Nativity of Our Lady

Birth of Mary by Domenico Ghirlandaio; 1486-90
Fresco; Cappella Tornabuoni, Santa Maria Novella, Florence

From the Proper of the Saints:

At the time of Mary's birth, the whole world was plunged in darkness. The heathen nations were steeped in vice and pride. The Jews, too, had corrupted their ways and were departed from God. Everywhere there was sin and gloom, scarcely any bright spot on the face of the earth. But when Mary was born, a bright light arose amid the darkness; the dawn of the glorious day that was to usher in the Redeemer.

So, too, the darkness of the sinner's soul is dispersed by Mary's holy influence. Where the love of her is born in the soul, all becomes full of light, and Jesus comes to make His habitation there. Mary, in the first hour of her life, brought more glory to God than all the saints of the Old Testament. In her were made perfect the obedience of Abraham, the chastity of Joseph, the patience of Job, the meekness of Moses, the prudence of Josue. It is because she is the model and pattern of these and all other virtues that she can communicate them to us.

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