Thursday, December 08, 2005

Feast of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary

As a convert to the Faith, the Immaculate Conception was one of Catholic doctrines I was most puzzled by. While I accepted the Church's authority, it was a great relief to finally understand the reason that God so particularly favoured Mary with this blessing. Firstly, since Christ derives his human nature from His mother, it seems only logical that she be without stain of original sin. Secondly, St. Paul tells us that Christ is a second Adam- that in Adam all men died, but through Christ all men might live; the parallel to this is that it was Eve's disobedience which led to Adam's fall- while Mary's obedience, her fiat makes the Incarnation of Christ, and our salvation possible. In this she is a second Eve, as Christ is a second Adam, and just as Christ is a man without sin, so too is Mary a women without sin.

O God, Who by the Immaculate Conception of the Virgin didst make her a worthy habitation for Thy Son and didst by His foreseen death preserve her from all stain of sin, grant, we beseech Thee, that through her intercession we may be cleansed from sin and come with pure hearts before Thee. Through the same thy Son Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.


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