--from The Roman Breviary, Matins responsory, First Sunday of Advent
Here is a link from Fish Eaters about making an Advent wreath, with accompanying meditations.
I read that in the new film about the Nativity of Our Lord, the Blessed Mother is shown having labor pains, in contradiction to the writings of many of the Fathers and Doctors of the Church, who maintain that Mary gave birth without pain and without loss to her perpetual virginity. The preceding link gives the theological reasoning for this de fide teaching, as well as the quotations below:
"Who loves you is amazed and who would understand is silent and confused, because he cannot probe the Mother who gave birth in her virginity. If it is too great to be clarified with words the disputants ought not on that account cross swords with your Son (St Ephraim, Songs of Praise, 1, 2; )
"Believe in the Son of God, the Word before all the ages, who was...in these last days, for your sake, made son of Man, born of the Virgin Mary in an indescribable and stainless way, -for there is no stain where God is and whence salvation comes...." (St. Gregory of Nazianzen, Oration on Holy Baptism, 40:45; 381 AD)
"According to the condition of the body (Jesus) was in the womb, He nursed at His mother's breast, He lay in the manger, but superior to that condition, the Virgin conceived and the Virgin bore, so that you might believe that He was God who restored nature, though He was man who, in accord with nature, was born of a human being." (St. Ambrose of Milan, Mystery of the Lord's Incarnation, 6:54; 382 AD)
"Who is this gate (Ezekiel 44:1-4), if not Mary? Is it not closed because she is a virgin? Mary is the gate through which Christ entered this world, when He was brought forth in the virginal birth and the manner of His birth did not break the seals of virginity." (St. Ambrose of Milan, The Consecration of a Virgin and the Perpetual Virginity of Mary, 8:52; c. 391 AD) Share