The Catechism of Pope Saint Pius X
on Hypostatic Union


The Annunciation and Incarnation of Jesus Christ - by RIZI, Francisco - from Museo del Prado, Madrid

 

The Incarnation of Jesus Christ within the Womb of Mary implies Three (3) facts:

The Divine Person of Jesus Christ;

The Human Nature of Jesus Christ;

The Hypostatic Union of the Human with the Divine Nature in the Divine Person of Jesus Christ.

Hypostatic Union - A Theological Term used with reference to the Incarnation, within the Womb of Mary, to express the Divinely Revealed Truth that in Jesus Christ, One (1) Divine Person subsists in Two (2) Natures, the Divine and the Human. The Natures are not joined in a Moral or Accidental Union; nor mixed, fused or co-mingled; but they are Substantially United for Eternity.

The Catechism of Saint Pius X was suggested by Pope Saint Pius when he was still Archbishop of Mantua. Pius X's Catechism is written in a memorizable, Question and Answer format.

 

The Catechism of Pope Saint Pius X
on Hypostatic Union

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The Third Article of the Creed

1 Q: What is taught in the Third Article: Who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the Virgin Mary?

A: The Third Article of the Creed teaches that by the Operation of the Holy Ghost the Son of God took a Body and Soul like ours, in the Chaste Womb of the Virgin Mary, and that He was born of that Virgin.

2 Q: Did the Father and the Son also take-part in forming the Body and creating the Soul of Jesus Christ?

A: Yes, the whole Three (3) Divine Persons co-operated in forming the Body and in creating the Soul of Jesus Christ.

3 Q: Why then is it simply said: He was conceived by the Holy Ghost?

A: It is simply said: He was conceived by the Holy Ghost, because the Incarnation of the Son of God is a work of Goodness and Love, and the works of Goodness and Love are attributed to the Holy Ghost.

4 Q: In becoming Man did the Son of God cease to be God?

A: No, the Son of God became Man without ceasing to be God.

5 Q: Jesus Christ, then, is God and Man at the same-time?

A: Yes, the Incarnate Son of God, that is, Jesus Christ, is both God and Man, Perfect God and Perfect Man.

6 Q: Are there, then, Two (2) Natures in Jesus Christ?

A: Yes, in Jesus Christ, Who is both God and Man, there are Two (2) Natures, the Divine and the Human.

7 Q: In Jesus Christ are there also Two (2) Persons, the Divine and the Human?

A: No, in the Son of God made Man there is only One (1) Person, namely, the Divine.

8 Q: How many Wills are there in Jesus Christ?

A: In Jesus Christ there are Two (2) Wills, the One (1) Divine, the Other Human.

9 Q: Did Jesus Christ possess Free Will?

A: Yes, Jesus Christ possessed Free Will, but He could not do Evil, since to be able to do Evil is a Defect, and not a Perfection of Liberty.

10 Q: Are the Son of God and the Son of Mary One and the Same Person?

A: Yes, the Son of God and the Son of Mary are One and the Same Person, that is, Jesus Christ, True God and True Man.

11 Q: Is the Blessed Virgin the Mother of God?

A: Yes, the Blessed Virgin is the Mother of God, because she is the Mother of Jesus Christ, Who is True God.

12 Q: How did Mary become the Mother of Jesus Christ?

A: Mary became the Mother of Jesus Christ solely through the Operation and Power of the Holy Ghost.

13 Q: Is it of Faith that Mary was always a Virgin?

A: Yes, it is of Faith that the Most Holy Mary was always a Virgin, and she is called the Virgin of Virgins.

 

The Fourth Article of the Creed

1 Q: What are we taught in the Fourth Article: Suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, dead, and buried?

A: The Fourth Article of the Creed teaches us that to Redeem the world by His Precious Blood, Jesus Christ Suffered under Pontius Pilate, the Governor of Judea, Died on the Tree of the Cross, and, on being taken down there from, was buried.

2 Q: What does the word Suffered denote?

A: The word Suffered denotes all the Pains endured by Jesus during His Passion.

3 Q: Did Jesus Christ Suffer as God or as Man?

A: Jesus Christ Suffered as Man alone; as God He could neither Suffer nor Die.

4 Q: What Class of Punishment was that of the Cross?

A: The Punishment of the Cross in those days was the Cruelest and the most Ignominious of all Punishments.

5 Q: Who was it that Condemned Jesus Christ to be Crucified?

A: He who Condemned Jesus Christ to be Crucified was Pontius Pilate, the Governor of Judea who, though recognizing His Innocence, cravenly yielded to the Threats of the people of Jerusalem.

6 Q: Could not Jesus Christ have freed Himself from the hands of Pilate and the Jews?

A: Yes, Jesus Christ could have freed Himself from the hands of Pilate and the Jews, but knowing it was His Eternal Father's Will that He should Suffer and Die for our Salvation, He voluntarily submitted; nay, He Himself went-forth to meet His Enemies and freely permitted Himself to be taken and led to Death.

7 Q: Where was Jesus Christ Crucified?

A: Jesus Christ was Crucified on Mount Calvary.

8 Q: What did Jesus Christ do while on the Cross?

A: On the Cross Jesus Christ Prayed for His Enemies; gave His own Most Blessed Mother as a Mother to Saint John, and, in his person, to all of us; offered up His Death in Sacrifice; and Satisfied the Justice of God for the Sins of Men.

9 Q: Would it not have been enough for an Angel to come and make Satisfaction for us?

A: No, it would not have been enough for an Angel to come and make Satisfaction for us, because the Offense given to God by Sin was, in a certain sense, Infinite, and to Satisfy for It a Person possessing Infinite Merit was required.

10 Q: To Satisfy Divine Justice, was it necessary that Jesus Christ should be both God and Man?

A: Yes; to be able to Suffer and Die it was necessary that Jesus Christ should be Man; while for His Sufferings to be of Infinite Value it was necessary that He should be God.

11 Q: Why was it necessary that the Merits of Jesus Christ should be of Infinite Value?

A: It was necessary that the Merits of Jesus Christ should be of Infinite Value, because God's Majesty, which had been Offended by Sin, is Infinite.

12 Q: Was it necessary for Jesus Christ to Suffer as much as He actually did?

A: No, it was not absolutely necessary for Jesus Christ to Suffer as much as He did, because each of His Acts being of Infinite Value, the least of His Sufferings would have sufficed for our Redemption.

13 Q: Why, then, did Jesus Suffer so much?

A: Jesus Christ Suffered so much in order to Satisfy Divine Justice all the more abundantly; to display His Love for us still more; and to Inspire us with the Deepest Horror of Sin.

14 Q: Did anything remarkable happen at the Death of Jesus Christ?

A: Yes, at the Death of Jesus Christ, the Sun was darkened, the Earth trembled, Graves opened and many of the Dead arose.

15 Q: Where was the Body of Jesus Christ buried?

A: The Body of Jesus Christ was buried in a New Grave, hewn out of a rock, on the mount not far from where He had been Crucified.

 

Holy Week Triduum

allori_body_of_christ.jpg (70020 bytes) littlegoldcross.gif (962 bytes) In the Sepulchre were Jesus' Body and His Divinity.
Limbo3.jpg (65263 bytes) littlegoldcross.gif (962 bytes) Jesus' descent to Hell included His Soul and His Divinity.

 

16 Q: Was the Divinity separated from the Body and Soul of Jesus Christ by His Death?

A: The Divinity was separated from neither the Body nor the Soul of Christ in Death; only the Soul was separated from the Body.

17 Q: For whom did Jesus Christ Die?

A: Jesus Christ Died for the Salvation of all Men, and made Satisfaction for all.

18 Q: If Jesus Christ Died for the Salvation of all Men, why are not all Men Saved?

A: Jesus Christ Died for all, but not all are Saved, because not all will acknowledge Him; all do not observe His Law; all do not avail themselves of the means of Salvation He has left us.

19 Q: To be Saved is it enough that Jesus Christ has Died for us?

A: No, it is not enough for our Salvation that Jesus Christ has Died for us; it is also necessary that the Fruit of His Passion and Death be applied to each one of us, which is accomplished especially by means of the Sacraments instituted for this end by Jesus Christ Himself; and as many either do not receive the Sacraments at all, or do not receive Them well, they thus render the Death of Jesus Christ useless in their regard.

 

The Fifth Article of the Creed

1 Q: What are we taught in the Fifth Article: He descended into Hell; the third day He rose again from the Dead?

A: The Fifth Article of the Creed teaches us that the Soul of Jesus Christ, on being separated from His Body, descended to the Limbo of the Holy Fathers, and that on the Third Day It became United once more to His Body, never to be parted from It again.

2 Q: What is here meant by Hell?

A: Hell here means the Limbo of the Holy Fathers, that is, the place where the Souls of the Just were detained, in expectation of Redemption through Jesus Christ.

3 Q: Why were not the Souls of the Holy Fathers admitted into Heaven before the Death of Jesus Christ?

A: The Souls of the Holy Fathers were not admitted into Heaven before the Death of Jesus Christ, because Heaven was closed by the Sin of Adam, and it was but fitting that Jesus Christ, Who reopened It by His Death, should be the First to enter It.

4 Q: Why did Jesus Christ defer His Own Resurrection until the Third Day?

A: Jesus Christ deferred His Own Resurrection until the Third Day to show clearly that He was really Dead.

5 Q: Was the Resurrection of Jesus Christ like the Resurrection of other Men who had been raised from the Dead?

A: No, the Resurrection of Jesus Christ was not like the Resurrection of other Men who had been raised from the Dead, because He rose by His Own Power, while the Others were raised by the Power of God.

 

The Sixth Article of the Creed

1 Q: What are we taught in the Sixth Article: He ascended into Heaven, sitteth at the Right Hand of God, the Father Almighty?

A: The Sixth Article of the Creed teaches us that Jesus Christ, Forty Days after His Resurrection, ascended of Himself into Heaven in the sight of His Apostles; and that while as God He was equal to His Father in Glory, as Man He has been raised above all the Angels and Saints, and constituted Lord-of-All-Things.

2 Q: Why did Jesus Christ remain Forty Days on Earth after His Resurrection before ascending into Heaven?

A: After His Resurrection Jesus Christ remained Forty Days on Earth before ascending into Heaven, to prove by several apparitions that He was truly risen, to instruct the Apostles still further, and to confirm them in the Truths of Faith.

3 Q: Why did Jesus Christ ascend into Heaven?

A: Jesus Christ ascended into Heaven: (1) To take possession of the Kingdom He had Merited by His Death; (2) To prepare the place of our Glory, and to be our Mediator and Advocate with the Father, (3) To send the Holy Ghost upon His Apostles.

4 Q: Why is it said of Jesus Christ that He Ascended, and of His Most Holy Mother that she was Assumed, into Heaven?

A: It is said of Jesus Christ that He Ascended into Heaven, and of His Most Holy Mother that she was Assumed, because, Jesus Christ, being Man-God, Ascended into Heaven by His Own Power; but His Mother, being a Creature, even though the greatest of all Creatures, was taken up into Heaven by the Power of God.

5 Q: Explain the words: Sitteth at the Right Hand of God, the Father Almighty.

A: The word Sitteth signifies the Peaceful possession which Jesus Christ has of His Glory; and the words: At the Right Hand of God, the Father Almighty, denote that He has a Place of Honor above all Creatures.

 

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