ONE Magazine

The official publication of
Catholic Near East Welfare Association

Celebrating 50 years | God • World • Human Family • Church

Christmas Prayers From the Eastern Rites

Heaven and earth are united today, for Christ is born.Today has God come upon earth, and man gone up toheaven. Today for man’s sake is seen in the flesh Hewho by nature is invisible. Therefore let us also give gloryand cry aloud to Him: Glory to God in the highest,and on earth peace, which Thy coming has bestowedupon us, O Saviour: glory to Thee.

‘O sweetest child, how shall I feed Thee who givest food to all?How shall I hold Thee who holdest all things in Thy power?How shall I wrap Thee in swaddling clothes, who dost wrapthe whole earth in clouds?’ So cried the all-pure Ladywhom in faith we magnify.

Tell us, Joseph, how is it that thou bringest to Bethlehem,great with child, the Maiden whom thou has receivedfrom the sanctuary? ‘I have searched the prophets,’ said he,‘and have been warned by an angel: and I am persuaded that Maryshall give birth to God, in ways surpassing all interpretation.Magi from the east shall come to worship Him withprecious gifts’. O Lord, who for our sake has taken flesh:glory to Thee.

How is He contained in a womb, whom nothing can contain?And how can He who is in the bosom of the Fatherbe held in the arms of His Mother? This is according to Hisgood pleasure, as He knoweth and wisheth. For being without flesh,of His own will has He been made flesh; and He who is,for our sakes has become that which He was not. Withoutdeparting from His own nature He has shared in our substance.Desiring to fill the world on high withcitizens, Christ has undergone a twofold birth.

Let the creation rejoice exceedingly: for the Creatornow makes Himself to be created, and He who was before all thingsnow makes Himself known as God newly revealed.Let the Magi with their gifts go out to meet Him, let the shepherdsclap their hands in faith at the wonder, and let mortal menjoin the angels and make glad.

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