Saturday, 24 October 2015


Optional Reading for the Period between October 7 and Advent
A sermon of Saint Bernard*
"HAIL, full of grace, the Lord is with you" (Lk 1,28). Notice how the angel did not say "the Lord is in you," but "the Lord is with you." For God, who by the simplicity of his essence is equally and entirely everywhere present, has nevertheless, by his influence and operation, a presence in his rational creatures, which -he has not in others, and among the former, a presence in the good different from that which he has in the wicked. He is truly present in irrational creatures, yet without being embraced by them. He is in his rational creatures in such a manner that they all have the power to embrace him by knowledge, yet only the good can embrace him by love. Consequently, of the good alone it can be said that he is so in them as to be also with them, because of the harmony of their wills with his. For whilst they so conform their wills to the law of justice that it is not unworthy of God to will what they will, there is established a concord between his will and theirs, and thus they become specially united with him. But although this is the case with every holy soul, it is particularly true of Mary. So closely did God unite himself to her, that not only her will, but even her flesh was united to God; and from his own substance and the substance of the Virgin he fashioned one Christ, or rather he became one Christ who, although neither wholly from God nor wholly from Mary, yet belongs wholly to God and wholly to Mary: nor are there two sons, but the one same Christ is Son of both. The angel says, therefore, "Hail, full of grace, the Lord is with you." But, 0 Mary, the Lord with you is not the Son alone whom you have clothed with your flesh: he is also the Holy Spirit, by whom you have conceived, and he is also the Father by whom from eternity your Child is begotten. The Father, I say, is with you, who has given his Son to be also yours. The Son is with you, who in a marvelous way has entered your womb without detriment to your virginity. The Holy Spirit is with you, he who, with the Father and the Son, has prepared your virginal body to be the dwelling of the Word. Therefore "the Lord is with you."

* Homilia 3 super "Missus eet ," n.4. - PL 183, 72-73; Leale rcq , IV, p.38. Temporary version, based on Fr. Luddy's translation of the Seasonal Sermons, Vol. I, pp.97~99.

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