Isaac of Stella: Mary, the Church and the Soul of the Christian Wednesday, Feb 23 2011 

The Son of God is the first-born of many brothers.

Although by nature he is the only- begotten, by grace he has joined many to himself and made them one with him.

For to those who receive him he has given the power to become the sons of God.

He became the Son of man and made many men sons of God, uniting them to himself by his love and power, so that they became as one.

In themselves they are many by reason of their human descent, but in him they are one by divine rebirth.

The whole Christ and the unique Christ – the body and the head – are one: one because born of the same God in heaven, and of the same mother on earth.

They are many sons, yet one son. Head and members are one son, yet, many sons.

In the same way, Mary and the Church are one mother, yet more than one mother; one virgin, yet more than one virgin.

Both are mothers, both are virgins.

Each conceives of the same Spirit, without concupiscence.

Each gives birth to a child of God the Father, without sin.

Without any sin, Mary gave birth to Christ the head for the sake of his body.

By the forgiveness of every sin, the Church gave birth to the body, for the sake of its head.

Each is Christ’s mother, but neither gives birth to the whole Christ without the cooperation of the other.

In the inspired Scriptures, what is said in a universal sense of the virgin mother, the Church, is understood in an individual sense of the Virgin Mary.

And what is said in a particular sense of the virgin mother Mary is rightly understood in a general sense of the virgin mother, the Church.

When either is spoken of, the meaning can be understood of both, almost without qualification.

In a way, every Christian is also believed to be a bride of God’s Word, a mother of Christ, his daughter and sister, at once virginal and fruitful.

These words are used in a universal sense of the Church, in a special sense of Mary, in a particular sense of the individual Christian.

They are used by God’s Wisdom in person, the Word of the Father.

This is why Scripture says: I will dwell in the inheritance of the Lord.

The Lord’s inheritance is, in a general sense, the Church; in a special sense, Mary; in an individual sense, the Christian.

Christ dwelt for nine months in the tabernacle of Mary’s womb.

He dwells until the end of the ages in the tabernacle of the Church’s faith.

He will dwell forever in the knowledge and love of each faithful soul.

Isaac of Stella (1100-1169): Sermon 51, from the Office of Readings for Saturday of the Second  Week of Advent @ Crossroads Initiative.

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Isaac of Stella: “I Ascend To My Father And To Your Father” Friday, May 7 2010 

Just as the head and body of a man form one single man, so the Son of the Virgin and those he has chosen to be his members form a single man and the one Son of Man.

Christ is whole and entire, head and body, say the Scriptures, since all the members form one body, which with its head is one Son of Man, and he with the Son of God is one Son of God, who himself with God is one God.

Therefore the whole body with its head is Son of Man, Son of God, and God. This is the explanation of the Lord’s words:

Father, I desire that as you and I are one, so they may be one with us.

[…] The Son of God is one with God by nature; the Son of Man is one with him in his person; we, his body, are one with him sacramentally.

Consequently those who by faith are spiritual members of Christ can truly say that they are what he is: the Son of God and God himself.

But what Christ is by his nature we are as his partners; what he is of himself in all the fullness, we are as participants.

Finally, what the Son of God is by generation, his members are by adoption according to the text: As sons you have received the Spirit of adoption, enabling you to cry, Abba, Father.

Through his Spirit, he gave men the power to become sons of God, so that all those he has chosen might be taught by the firstborn among many brothers to say: Our Father, who art in heaven.

Again he says elsewhere: I ascend to my Father and to your Father.

[…] Just in himself, it is he who justifies himself. He alone is both Savior and saved.

In his own body on the cross he bore what he had washed from his body by the waters of baptism.

Bringing salvation through wood and through water, he is the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world which he took upon himself.

Himself a priest, he offers himself as sacrifice to God, and he himself is God.

Thus, through his own self, the Son is reconciled to himself as God, as well as to the Father and to the Holy Spirit.

Isaac of Stella (1100-1169): Sermon 42, from the Office of Readings for Friday of the Fifth Week of Easter at Catholic Radio Dramas.