Saturday, December 8, 2018
Feast of the Immaculate Conception
The Collect for this feast is as follows: "O God, who by the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin prepared a worthy dwelling for your Son, grant, we pray, that, as you preserved her from every stain by virtue of the Death of your Son, which you foresaw, so, through her intercession, we, too, may be cleansed and admitted to your presence."
I think the sentence is horrible to read, but it does contain the theology we need to understand this feast. Usually, the preface for the feast is the best source to understand the theology and here is what the preface says: "It is truly right and just, our duty and salvation, always and everywhere to give you thanks, Lord, holy Father, almighty and eternal God.
For you preserved the Most Blessed Virgin Mary from all stain of original sin, so that in her, endowed with the rich fullness of your grace, you might prepare a worthy Mother for your Son and signify the beginning of the Church, his beautiful Bride without spot or wrinkle.
She, the most pure Virgin, was to bring forth a Son, the innocent Lamb who would wipe away our offenses; you placed her above all others to be for your people an advocate of grace and a model of holiness.
And so, in company with the choirs of Angels, we praise you, and with joy we proclaim: Holy, Holy, Holy Lord God of hosts...."