21 November 2012

If only I were free tonight!

At long last, after many years of waiting, the "antechamber" of Pope Benedict's monumental work, Jesus of Nazareth, is finally in my hands.  Deo gratias!

Opening the little book subtitled The Infancy Narratives at random - it is only 132 pages - I found this insightful passage:

Mary wrapped the child in swaddling clothes.  Without yielding to sentimentality, we may imagine with what great love Mary approached her hour and prepared for the birth of her child.  Iconographic tradition has theologically interpreted the manger and swaddling clothes in terms of the theology of the Fathers.  The child stiffly wrapped in bandages is seen as prefiguring the hour of his death: from the onset, he is the sacrificial victim, as we shall see more closely when we examine the reference to the first-born.  The manger, then, was seen as a kind of altar (68).

I can't wait to read it and wish I didn't have any plans this evening!

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