"Send out Your light and Your truth, that they may lead me, and bring me to Your holy hill and to Your dwelling." Psalm 43:3

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Catherine of Siena: On the Virgin and the Incarnation

Saint Catherine of Siena writes:
If I consider your own great counsel, eternal Trinity, I see that in your light you saw the dignity and nobility of the human race.  So, just as love compelled you to draw us out of yourself, so that same love compelled you to buy us back when we were lost.  In fact, you showed that you loved us before we existed, when you chose to draw us out of yourself only for love.  But you have shown us greater love still by giving us yourself, shutting yourself up today in the pouch of humanity.  And what more could you have given us than to give your very self?  So you can truly ask us, 'What should I or could I have done for you that I have not done?'  I see, then, that whatever your wisdom saw, in that great council of yours, as best for our salvation, is what your mercy willed, and what your power has today accomplished ...
O Mary, I see this Word given to you, living in you yet not separated from the Father -- just as the word one has in one's mind does not leave one's heart or become separated from it even though the word is externalized and communicated to others.  In these things our human dignity is revealed -- that God should have done such and so great things for us.  
And even more: in you, O Mary, our human strength and freedom are revealed, for after the deliberation of such and so great a council, the angel was sent to you to announce to you the mystery of divine counsel, and to seek to know your will, and God's son did not come down to your womb until you had given your will's consent.  He waited at the door for you to open to him ... 'Here I am, God's servant; let it be done to me as you have said.'
The strength and freedom of the will is clearly revealed, then, for no good nor any evil can be done without that will.  Nor is there any devil or other creature that can drive it to the guilt of deadly sin without its consent.  Nor, on the other hand, can it be driven to do anything good unless it so chooses.  The eternal Godhead, O Mary, was knocking at your door, but unless you had opened that door of your will, God would not have taken flesh in you.  Blush, my soul, when you see that today God has become your relative in Mary.  Today, you have been shown that though you were made without your help, you will not be saved without your help, for today God is knocking at the door of Mary's will and waiting for her to open to Him.
Peace, and a blessed Christmastide!

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