Saint Leo the Great on the Mystery of the Incarnation

I had planned a new post for today, but unexpected additions to my schedule and bad time management on my part mitigated against it. Instead then, I would like to re-blog this post from the feast day of Pope Saint Leo the Great, as it contains an excerpt from his famous ‘Christmas Sermon’ – appropriate reading as we draw close to the Feast of the Nativity of Our Lord.

Journey Towards Easter

Today is the feast day of Pope Saint Leo the Great (410 – 461), who was one of the most significant figures in Church history, and certainly one of Christendom’s most memorable popes. A native of Tuscany, he became a deacon in the Roman church in 430, and gradually became known for his diplomatic skills, so that in 440 the Western Emperor Galla Placidia sent him to Gaul to heal the divide between the two most prominent officials in that region*. His importance in this respect was in fact known as early as 431, when Saint Cyril of Alexandria wrote to him to ask that Rome use her influence to prevent Juvenal of Jerusalem claiming jurisdiction over all Palestine (he wanted to merge Caeserea and Antioch into one patriarchate under Jerusalem).

Happily, Cyril and Juvenal made up later that year, siding together against Nestorius at the First Council of Ephesus…

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