Saturday, November 05, 2016

The Feast of All Saints 2016 - The Patriarchs and Prophets

From the Breviary according to the use of the Roman Curia, 1529, the continuation of the sermon for the seventh day in the Octave of All Saints.

In like manner, brethren, let us look upon the multitudes of the holy fathers that contemplate this most secure happiness, shining forth more brightly than the stars, radiant with the faith of the patriarchs, resplendent in their patience, rejoicing in the hope of the prophets, and splendid in their piety. Enlightened, as it were, by the dawn that went before the rising of the true Sun, they announced to a longing world the two comings of the Savior, and all that would come to pass through the mystery of the ineffable Word that was awaited. But among them, we know that John the Baptist holds the first place who venerated by all the world, and called “greater than a prophet”; it was he that prepared for the coming of the new law, and clearly showed forth the innocent Lamb Who takes away the sins of the world, and brings salvation to us, Whom all the others only foretold.

Jamb sculptures of the north portal of Chartres Cathedral, to the right of the central door; 13th century. From left to right, the prophets Isaiah, Jeremiah, Simeon (holding the infant Christ), John the Baptist, and St Peter. (image from Flickr by François Philipp, Creative Commons license.)

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