Voices ever ancient, ever new. 2 January 2014: Saints Basil the Great and Gregory Nazianzen, Bishops and Doctors of the Church

“... the One Who is coming after me, Whose sandal strap I am not worthy to untie.” (John 1:27).”

Saint Ambrose of Milan offers the following insight on this verse from today’s Gospel:

“Moses was not the bride groom, for to him comes the word, “Loose your shoe from off your foot,” that he might give place to his Lord. Nor was Joshua, the son of Nun, the bridegroom, for to him also it was told, saying, “Loose your shoe from off your foot,” lest, by reason of the likeness of his name, he should be thought the spouse of the church. None other is the bridegroom but Christ alone, of whom John said, “He who has the bride is the bridegroom.” They, therefore, loose their shoes, but his shoe cannot be loosed, even as John said, “I am not worthy to untie the thong of his sandal.” To whom else but the Word of God incarnate can those words apply? “His legs are pillars of marble, set upon bases of gold.” For Christ alone walks in the souls and makes his path in the minds of his saints, in which, as upon bases of gold and foundations of precious stone the heavenly Word has left his footprints ineffaceably impressed.” (On the Christian Faith, 3)

O God,
Who were pleased to give light to your Church
by the example and teaching
of the Bishops Saints Basil and Gregory,
grant, we pray,
that in humility we may learn your truth
and practice it faithfully in charity.
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.

Click here for an overview of the Cappadocian Fathers.

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