Voices ever ancient, ever new. Saint Stephen 2013.

“... and he said, “Behold, I see the heavens opened and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God.” (Acts 7:56)

In commenting upon this verse from today’s Mass Readings, Saint Bede the Venerable writes:

“Since Christ the Lord was the perfect son of both God and man, why is it that the blessed martyr preferred to call him the “Son of man” rather than the Son of God? It would seem that he could have offered him greater glory if he had chosen to call him the Son of God rather than the Son of man—unless by this testimony the infidelity of the Jews could be confounded, for they remembered that they had crucified a man and that they had not chosen to believe that he was God. Therefore, to strengthen the blessed martyr’s endurance the doors of the heavenly kingdom are opened and, so that the innocent man being stoned may not stumble to the ground, the crucified God-man appears crowned in heaven. Hence, because to stand is proper to one who does battle or to one who gives help, he fittingly saw standing at God’s right hand the one whom he had as [his] helper among the men who were persecuting him. And it does not seem inconsistent that Mark describes him as sitting at God’s right hand, which is the posture of judging, for “now he judges all things” invisibly, and “at the end he will come” as the visible “judge of all.” (Commentary on the Acts of the Apostles, 7)

Grant, Lord, we pray,
that we may imitate what we worship,
and so learn to love even our enemies,
for we celebrate the heavenly birthday
of a man who knew how to pray even for his persecutors.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son,
who lives and reigns with You
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.

Glory to You Father, Son and Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning is now
and will be forever. Amen. Alleluia!