Optional Memorial: Saint Nicholas, Bishop

“A voice says, “Proclaim!” I answer, “What shall I proclaim?” “All flesh is grass, and all their loyalty like the flower of the field.” (Isaiah 40:6.)

Saint Basil the Great offers the following insight on this verse from today’s First Reading:

“The voice of the Lord is on the waters.” In many places you might find the word voice occurring. Therefore, for the sake of understanding what the voice of the Lord is, we should gather, as far as we are able, from the divine Scripture what has been said about the voice; for instance, in the divine warning to Abraham: “And immediately the voice came to him: He shall not be your heir.” And in Moses: “And all the people saw the voice and the flames.” Again in Isaiah: “The voice of one saying, Cry.” With us, then, voice is either air that has been struck or some form that is in the air against which he who is crying out wishes to strike. Now, what is the voice of the Lord? Would it be considered the impact on the air? Or air, which has been struck reaching the hearing of him to whom the voice comes? Or neither of these but that this is a voice of another kind, namely, an image formed by the mind of people whom God wishes to hear his own voice, so that they have this representation corresponding to that which frequently occurs in their dreams? Indeed, just as, although the air is not struck, we keep some recollection of certain words and sounds occurring in our dreams, not receiving the voice through our hearing but through the impression on our heart itself, so also we must believe that some such voice from God appeared in the prophets.” (Homilies on the Psalms (Psalm 28), 13.)

We humbly implore your mercy, Lord:
protect us in all dangers
through the prayers
of the Bishop Saint Nicholas,
that the way of salvation
may lie open before us.
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