In between tonight’s rib roast and tomorrow’s Turkey Milanese, I’m hoping to read with the kids. First up will be Fiona French’s Bethlehem, a beautifully illustrated setting for Luke’s infancy narrative that’s become a Christmas Eve tradition. Next will likely be article 3 of the creed in the St. Pius X Catechism, an overlooked gem praised by Pope Benedict and still used by Italian Catholic families. Here’s the text:
The Third Article of the Creed
1 Q. What is taught in the Third Article: Who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the Virgin Mary?
A. The Third Article of the Creed teaches that by the operation of the Holy Ghost the Son of God took a body and soul like ours, in the chaste womb of the Virgin Mary, and that He was born of that Virgin.
2 Q. Did the Father and the Son also take part in forming the body and creating the soul of Jesus Christ?
A. Yes, the whole Three divine Persons co-operated in forming the body and in creating the soul of Jesus Christ.
3 Q. Why then is it simply said: He was conceived by the Holy Ghost?
A. It is simply said: He was conceived by the Holy Ghost, because the Incarnation of the Son of God is a work of goodness and love, and the works of goodness and love are attributed to the Holy Ghost.
4 Q. In becoming man did the Son of God cease to be God?
A. No, the Son of God became man without ceasing to be God.
5 Q. Jesus Christ, then, is God and man at the same time?
A. Yes, the incarnate Son of God, that is, Jesus Christ, is both God and man, perfect God and perfect man.
6 Q. Are there, then, two natures in Jesus Christ?
A. Yes, in Jesus Christ, who is both God and man, there are two natures, the divine and the human.
7 Q. In Jesus Christ are there also two Persons, the divine and the human?
A. No, in the Son of God made man there is only one Person, namely, the divine.
8 Q. How many wills are there in Jesus Christ?
A. In Jesus Christ there are two wills, the one divine, the other human.
9 Q. Did Jesus Christ possess free will?
A. Yes, Jesus Christ possessed free will, but He could not do evil, since to be able to do evil is a defect, and not a perfection, of liberty.
10 Q. Are the Son of God and the Son of Mary one and the same Person?
A. Yes, the Son of God and the Son of Mary are one and the same Person, that is, Jesus Christ, true God and true man.
11 Q. Is the Blessed Virgin the Mother of God?
A. Yes, the Blessed Virgin is the Mother of God, because she is the Mother of Jesus Christ, who is true God.
12 Q. How did Mary become the Mother of Jesus Christ?
A. Mary became the Mother of Jesus Christ solely through the operation and power of the Holy Ghost.
13 Q. Is it of faith that Mary was always a Virgin?
A. Yes, it is of faith that the most holy Mary was always a Virgin, and she is called the Virgin of virgins.
Merry Christmas to all.