UNBORN WORD of the day


CHRIST IN THE WOMB OF MARY IS REALLY ONE OF US
September 12, 2007, 11:48 pm
Filed under: Fathers of the Church

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Today, Thursday, Sept. 13, 2007 is the feast day of St. John Chrysostom (died 407 A.D.). He was famous for his eloquent preaching. In those early centuries of the Church various forms of Gnosticism ebbed and flowed throughout the known world. Part of the Gnostic message claimed that Christ did not have a real physical body like you and I. The early Church battled this heresy for centuries. In the following excerpt from one of John’s homilies on the Gospel of Matthew, we see John defending the Church’s understanding of Jesus Christ as fully God and fully man.

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“Nor think that thou hast learnt all, by hearing “of the Spirit;” nay, for we are ignorant of many things, even when we have learnt this; as, for instance, how the Infinite is in a womb, how He that contains all things is carried, as unborn, by a woman; how the Virgin bears, and continues a virgin. How, I pray thee, did the Spirit frame that Temple? how did He take not all the flesh from the womb, but a part thereof, and increased it, and fashioned it?

For that He did come forth of the Virgin’s flesh, He hath declared by speaking of “that which was conceived in her;” (Mt 1:20) and Paul, by saying, “made of a woman;” (Gal 4:4) whereby he stops the mouths of them that say, Christ came among us as through some conduit. For, if this were so, what need of the womb? If this were so, He hath nothing in common with us, but that flesh is of some other kind, and not of the mass which belongs to us. How then was He of the root of Jesse? How was He a rod? how Son of man? how was Mary His mother? how was He of David’s seed? how did he “take the form of a servant?” (Phil 2:7) how “was the Word made flesh?”(Jn 1:14) and how saith Paul to the Romans, “Of whom as concerning the flesh Christ came, who is God over all?”(Rom 9:5)

Therefore that He was of us, and of our substance, and of the Virgin’s womb, is manifest from these things, and from others beside; but how, is not also manifest. Do not either thou then inquire; but receive what is revealed, and be not curious about what is kept secret.”

Homilies on the Gospel of Matthew Homily IV Matthew 1, 17



“He took a loving quiet in us”
September 11, 2007, 9:28 pm
Filed under: Quotes from Great Christians, Unborn Jesus

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The following beautiful and poetic reflection about Jesus is taken from St. Francis de Sales book On the love of God.

“He took a loving quiet in us, yea even with some suspension of his senses, in his mother’s womb and in his infancy.

And he of whom it is so frequently
written: I live, saith the Lord; could afterwards have said according to His apostle’s language:

I live, now not I, but man liveth in me.
To me to live is man, and to die for man is gain.
My life is hidden with man in God.

He who dwelt in himself dwells now in us, and
He who was living from all eternity in the bosom of his Eternal Father becomes mortal in the (womb) of his temporal Mother;
He who lived eternally by his own divine life, lived with a human life,
He who from eternity had been only God,
shall be for all eternity man too:

So has the love of man ravished God, and drawn him into an ecstasy!”

When I read this I think how much Jesus identifies with all of us and how much He loves the little unborn and newborn babies. After all: “He took a loving quiet in us, yea even…in his mother’s womb.”



Antidote for a “child-poor” Europe
September 10, 2007, 10:16 pm
Filed under: Pope Benedict XVI

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In a homily on September 8, 2007, Pope Benedict made this startling remark:

“Europe has become child-poor: we want everything for ourselves, and place little trust in the future. Yet the earth will be deprived of a future only when the forces of the human heart and of reason illuminated by the heart are extinguished – when the face of God no longer shines upon the earth. Where God is, there is the future.

This is how he put it to a group of diplomats on Sept. 7, 2007:

“Rather, I wish to act as an advocate for a profoundly human need, speaking out on behalf of those unborn children who have no voice. In doing so, I do not close my eyes to the difficulties and the conflicts which many women are experiencing, and I realize that the credibility of what we say also depends on what the Church herself is doing to help women in trouble.

In this context, then, I appeal to political leaders not to allow children to be considered as a form of illness, nor to abolish in practice your legal system’s acknowledgment that abortion is wrong. I say this out of a concern for humanity. But that is only one side of this disturbing problem. The other is the need to do everything possible to make European countries once again open to welcoming children. Encourage young married couple to establish new families and to become mothers and fathers! You will not only assist them, but you will benefit society as a whole. I also decisively support you in your political efforts to favour conditions enabling young couples to raise children. Yet all this will be pointless, unless we can succeed in creating once again in our countries a climate of joy and confidence in life, a climate in which children are not seen as a burden, but rather as a gift for all.

Following are some articles that give statistics on birth trends and children in Europe an elsewhere in the world. (While I don’t always agree with the analysis given in some of these articles – I have linked to them to show that those on all sides of the spectrum agree that there is a dramatic decrease in birth-rates, especially in Western nations) One website even stated: We read things like the fact that the current fertility rate in 15 European nations is so low, that the United Nations has decided it is “unprecedented in human history.”

It’s the Demography, Stupid:The real reason the West is in danger of extinction. BY Mark Steyn (January 4, 2006)

Crude Birth and Death Rates for Selected Countries
(per 1,000 population) from Infoplease

Live Births and Birth Rates, by Year from Infoplease

It Will Be a Smaller World After All By Ben J. Wattenberg, New York Times, March 8, 2003

 



Show us Jesus – He comes first as a child
September 9, 2007, 8:00 pm
Filed under: Pope Benedict XVI

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“ ‘Show us Jesus!’ Let us make this prayer today with our whole heart; let us make this prayer above and beyond the present moment, as we inwardly seek the Face of the Redeemer. ‘Show us Jesus!’ Mary responds, showing him to us in the first instance as a child. God has made himself small for us. God comes not with external force, but he comes in the powerlessness of his love, which is where his true strength lies. He places himself in our hands. He asks for our love. He invites us to become small ourselves, to come down from our high thrones and to learn to be childlike before God. He speaks to us informally. He asks us to trust him and thus to learn how to live in truth and love.

The child Jesus naturally reminds us also of all the children in the world, in whom he wishes to come to us. Children who live in poverty; who are exploited as soldiers; who have never been able to experience the love of parents; sick and suffering children, but also those who are joyful and healthy.”

From a homily given by Pope Benedict XVI on September 8, 2007

Pope Benedict went on to say: Europe has become child-poor… See tomorrow’s post on that topic



Dr. Thomas Hilgers – One of the Heroes of our Modern Age
September 7, 2007, 9:59 pm
Filed under: Inspirational Pro-life leaders, Medical/Bioethical Issues

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A few days ago we had a post entitled Pro-life Doctors – Heroes of Our Modern Age. We would like to highlight one such doctor, Dr. Thomas W. Hilgers. Dr. Hilgers founded and runs the Pope Paul VI Institute An Institute which in its own words is dedicated to building a Culture of Life.

For years I have heard about Dr. Hilgers in relation to his work with Natural Family Planning but what I didn’t realize is that his institute is dedicated to confronting many of the challenges to do with fertility including developing moral options to treat woman who are infertile. What brought my attention to Dr. Hilgers was a friend who told me her daughter-in-law, who is now pregnant with her third child, would never have been able to have children if it weren’t for the Pope Paul VI Institute.

Below the institute describes how it tries to build a Culture of Life:

“By confronting the contraceptive mentality, which is the gateway to abortion.
By confronting artificial reproductive technologies that suppress, distort, and alter women’s fertility; that negatively impact marriages and families; and that lead to the “new abortion.”
By confronting moral erosion.
By confronting Planned Parenthood’s agenda.”

Here are a few links that explain Dr. Hilgers work:

In Their Own Words: Women Healed

Institute Practices Reproductive Medicine — and Catholicism

Agents of Change

 

 

 

 

 



a sumptuous banquet according to the country fashion
September 6, 2007, 11:26 pm
Filed under: Quotes from Great Christians, Unborn Jesus

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Below is a quote from St. Francis de Sales. Here he takes a quote from the beautiful Song of Songs and interprets it for us – he sees the Unborn Christ Child in this verse:

The divine lover like a shepherd, and indeed he is one, prepared a sumptuous banquet according to the country fashion for his sacred spouse, which he so described that mystically it represented all the mysteries of man’s redemption.

I am come into my garden, said he, O my sister, my spouse, I have gathered my myrrh, with aromatical spices; I have eaten the honey-comb with my honey, I have drunk my wine with my milk; eat, O friends, and drink, and be inebriated, my dearly beloved!’ (Song of Songs 5:1)

Ah! when was it, I pray you, that our Saviour came into his garden, if not when he came into his mother’s purest, humblest and sweetest womb, replenished with all the flourishing plants of holy virtues? And what is meant by our Saviour’s gathering his myrrh with his perfumes, except that he joined suffering to suffering until death, even the death of the cross, heaping by that means merit upon merit and treasures upon treasures, to enrich his spiritual children? And how did he eat his honey-comb with his honey, but when he lived a new life, reuniting his soul, more sweet than honey, to his pierced and wounded body, with more holes than a honeycomb? And when ascending into heaven he took possession of all the surroundings and dependencies of his divine glory, what other thing did he if not mix the exhilarating wine of the essential glory of his soul, with the delightful milk of the perfect felicity of his body, in a more excellent manner than hitherto he had done?


Treatise on the Love of God by St. Francis de Sales, (1567-1622)
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Wanted! Young hearts for God
September 5, 2007, 11:04 pm
Filed under: Pope Benedict XVI

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On September 2, Pope Benedict celebrated the Eucharist in Loreto, Italy with about half million young people.

In his homily Benedict XVI affirmed that “Jesus Christ, God made man, in Mary assumed our own flesh, took part in our lives and wished to share in our history. In order to accomplish this Covenant, God sought a young heart and found it in Mary.”

“Even today God continues to seek young hearts, He seeks young people with great hearts who are capable of making space for Him in their lives in order to become protagonists of the New Covenant.” …

In Loreto, said the Pope, “our thoughts naturally go to the Holy House of Nazareth which is the shrine of humility: the humility of God Who became flesh and the humility of Mary who accepted Him in her womb; the humility of the Creator and the humility of the creature.”

Today, he continued, “the humble are seen as resigned and defeated, as people who have nothing to say to the world. Yet the truth is that humility is the best way, and not only because it is a great human virtue but also, and primarily, because it is God’s own way of acting.”

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