Meditation;
Feast of the Immaculate Conception,
(Celebrated 8th December)


Immaculate Conception of Mary - by RUBENS, Pieter Pauwel - from Museo del Prado, Madrid

"I will put Enemities between thee and the Woman, and thy seed and her Seed: She shall 'Crush' thy Head" - ("Inimicitias ponam inter te et mulierem, et semen tuum et semen illius; ipsa conteret caput tuum" Genesis 3:15). Mary is that Woman of Gensis 3:15, that Valiant Woman who God Predicted He would 'Bring' into the World, to 'Conquer' Lucifer. The Proud Lucifer was to be 'Crushed' by a Humble Little Jewish Girl. The Palm and Olive Branches, Displayed by the Putti, are Symbolic of her many Great Victories over Satan. The Proud Spirit 'Endeavored' to 'Infect' the Most Pure Soul of this Virgin with his Venom, as he had already 'Infected' the Whole Human Race. But, 'Praised' and ever 'Blessed' be God, Who, in His Infinite Goodness, 'Pre-Endowed' her for this Purpose, with such Great Grace, that, 'Remaining' always Free from any Guilt-of-Sin, she was ever able to 'Beat-down' and 'Confound' his Pride, as Saint-Augustine, or whoever may be the Author of the Commentary-on-Genesis, 'Says': "Since the Devil is the Head of Original Sin, this Head it was that Mary 'Crushed': for Sin never had any entry-into the Soul of this Blessed Virgin, which was consequently Free-from all Stain" - ("Cum subjection originalis peccati caput sit diaboli, tale caput Maria contrivit; quia nulla peccati subjection ingressum habuit in animam Virginis, et ideo ab omni macula immunis fuit").

 

The Eternal Father 'Destined' this, His Daughter, to 'Crush' the Head
of the Infernal Serpent, who had 'Seduced' Man

 

Meditation;
Feast of the Immaculate Conception

by Saint Alphonsus Liguori

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First Meditation

It was indeed 'Becoming' that the Three (3) Divine Persons should 'Preserve' Mary from Original Sin. It was 'Becoming' that the Father should do so, because Mary was His First-born Daughter. As Jesus was the First-born of God, "the Firstborn of every Creature" - Colossians 1:15. So also was Mary, the 'Destined' Mother-of-God, always Considered-by Him as His First-born Daughter by-Adoption, and therefore He always 'Possessed' her by His Grace: "The Lord Possessed me in the Beginning of His Ways". For the Honor, therefore, of His Son, it was 'Becoming' that the Father should 'Preserve' His Mother from every Stain-of-Sin. It is also 'Becoming' that He should do so, because He 'Destined' this His Daughter to 'Crush' the Head-of-the-Infernal-Serpent, who had 'Seduced' Man, as we Read in Genesis, "She shall Crush thy Head" - Genesis 3:15. How, then, could He 'Permit' that she should First be the Slave of this Infernal Serpent? Moreover, Mary was also 'Destined' to 'Become' the Advocate-of-Sinners; therefore it was also 'Becoming' that God should 'Preserve' her from Sin, that she might not 'Appear' Guilty of the same Fault of Men, for whom she was to 'Intercede'.

 

Second Meditation

"Wisdom hath Built Herself a House" - Proverbs 9:1
"The Most High hath Sanctified His Own Tabernacle. . . . God will Help it in the Morning, Early" - Psalm 45:5,6
"for Wisdom will not enter into a Malicious Soul, nor Dwell in a Body, Subject to Sin - Wisdom 1:4
 

It was 'Becoming' that the Son should have an Immaculate Mother. He Himself 'Chose' Mary for His Mother. It is Impossible to Believe that a Son, who could have a Queen for his Mother, would 'Choose' a Slave. How, then, can we Imagine, that the Eternal Word, Who could have an ever-Immaculate Mother, and One who had always been the Friend-of God, would have One Defiled-by-Sin, and at One Time, the Enemy of God? Moreover, as an Ancient Author 'Says', "the Flesh of Christ, is the Flesh of Mary". The Son-of-God would have Felt Horror, to have 'Taken' Flesh of a Saint-Agnes, a Saint-Gertrude, or a Saint-Teresa, because these Holy Virgins were Defiled-by-Sin before Baptism; and therefore the Devil could then have 'Reproached' Him with being 'Clothed' with Flesh, which had Once been Subject-to him. But, as Mary was always Pure and Immaculate, Our Lord 'Felt' no Horror, at 'Becoming' Man , in her Chaste Womb. Besides, Saint Thomas 'Says', "Mary was Preserved from every Actual Sin, even Venial"; for otherwise, she would not have been a 'Becoming' Mother of God; but how-much-Less would she have been so, had she been 'Defiled' by Original Sin, which 'Renders' the Soul Hateful to God.

 

 

Third Meditation

Mary Depicted as -
'A Garden Enclosed' - Canticles (Song-of-Songs) 4:12
 

It was 'Becoming' the Holy Ghost, that this, His Most Beloved Spouse, should be Immaculate. As Men who had already Fallen-into-Sin were to be 'Redeemed', He Willed that this, His Spouse, should be 'Redeemed' in a more Noble Way; that is, by being 'Preserved' from Falling-into-Sin. And since God 'Preserved' the Body of Mary, after her Death, how-much-more should we 'Believe' that He 'Preserved' her Soul from the Corruption-of-Sin? Hence, the Divine Spouse 'Calls' her, in the Sacred Canticles, "an Enclosed Garden, a Fountain Sealed up" - Canticles 4:12; for an Enemy never 'Entered' the Blessed Soul of Mary. Therefore, He 'Praised' her, 'Calling' her all Beautiful, always His Friend, and all Pure, "Thou art all Fair, O my Love, and there is not a Spot in thee" - Canticles 4:7.

Ah, my Most Beautiful Lady, I Rejoice in seeing thee, by thy-Purity and thy-Beauty, so-Dear-to God. I Thank God for having 'Preserved' thee from every Stain. My Queen, since thou art so-Loved by the Most Holy Trinity, 'Disdain' not to 'Cast' thine Eyes on my Soul, which is so 'Defiled' by Sin, that, Seeing it, thou mayest 'Obtain' me Pardon and Eternal Salvation, from God. 'Behold' me, and 'Change' me. Thou, by thy Sweetness, hast 'Drawn' so many Hearts to thy Love, 'Draw' also my Heart, that from henceforward, it may 'Love' no other than God and thee. Thou well Knowest, that I have Placed all my Hopes in thee, my Dear Mother; 'Abandon' me not. 'Help' me always with thine Intercession, in Life, and especially at the Hour of my Death; 'Grant' that I may Die 'Invoking' and 'Loving' thee, that I may 'Love' thee for-ever, in Paradise.

Amen