— Saint Lucy —
Advent Week 2: Saturday

“Until like fire a prophet appeared, his words a flaming furnace.” (Sirach 48:1)

Origen of Alexandria offers the following insight on this verse from today’s Gospel:

“If we understand what it means to be subject to Christ, especially in light of the passage, “And when everything is subject, he also, the Son, will subject himself to him who made everything subject to him,” then we will understand the lamb of God who takes on himself the sin of the world in a way worthy of the goodness of the God of the universe. And yet the lamb does not take on himself the sins of all, if they do not suffer and experience torment until their sins are taken from them. There are in fact thorns that are not merely loose but firmly stuck in the hands of whoever is so drunk with vice as to even forget the state of sobriety, as it says in Proverbs, “Thorns are hidden in the hands of a drunkard.” Must we spend words describing what troubles such implanted evils cause to the one who accepts them in the body of his soul? One who has accepted moral evil so deeply in his soul as to become a land that produces thorns needs to be deeply cut by the living Logos of God, which is “effective and sharper than any two-edged sword,” hotter than any fire. Into a soul reduced to this state, that fire must be sent that is capable of finding the thorns and getting at them in virtue of its divinity, without setting fire to the stems and ears of the fields. Many are the ways in which the Lamb of God takes away the sins of the world, in the first place through the sacrifice of himself. Some of these ways can be shown to the many, while others are hidden to them and known only to those considered worthy of the divine wisdom.” (Commentary on the Gospel of Luke, 6.)

May the glorious intercession
of the Virgin and Martyr Saint Lucy
give us new heart, we pray, O Lord,
so that we may celebrate her heavenly birthday
in this present age
and so behold things eternal.
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 the Father
and to the Son
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning,
is now, and will be forever. Amen