O Christian Soul, Acknowledge Your Dignity

“The humanity of Christ may be considered not only in its personal union with the Son of God, but also in regard to the qualities which it received on account of its Divine dignity; and here again the greatness of grace is made manifest. God in all His wisdom and power could give the human soul of His Son no more worthy condition than that which our soul receives by grace; for it is the sublimest that can be found in a creature.”

“One distinction only is there between the soul of Christ and our own. The soul of the Son of God has every claim and right to grace, merits it instead of receiving it as a gratuitous gift; it likewise receives grace directly and in exceeding abundance, and can in no wise lose it. Our soul receives grace as a gratuitous gift through Christ, in a limited measure, and may easily lose it by sin.”

“Again, the Divine dignity which the humanity of Christ receives through the personal union with the Eternal Word is reflected upon all the members of human kind. As that humanity was made the true Body of Christ, so all regenerated mankind was made the mystical Body of Christ. Christ is indeed the Head, and we are His members. Inasmuch as we are one with Him, we enjoy already, apart from grace, a certain supernatural dignity; and as He had a right to grace, so we acquire a right to it through Him. By Him mankind appropriates grace, and possesses it as something which is due to it on account of its Head. Christ is the heavenly Vine permeated by the fulness of Divine life, and we are the branches into which this life is diffused.”

“‘O Christian soul,’ St. Leo exclaims, ‘acknowledge your dignity; know that as a Christian you surpass the Angels not only in nature, but also in grace! For the Angels are kindred to God by one tie only, because they partake of this Divine Nature; you, however, in a twofold manner, because God has also adopted your nature. If these pure and holy spirits were capable of envy, they would envy us because God hath taken upon Himself the nature, not of Angels or Archangels, but of the seed of Abraham.'”

Quotations from Alice Lady Lovat, The Marvels of Divine Grace: Meditations Based on the “Glories of Divine Grace” (Original Treatise by Fr. Nieremberg, S.J., Entitled “Del Aprecio y Estima de la Divina Gracia”) (London: R. & T. Washbourne, Ltd., 1917).

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