Christianity is the paradox of a Child-God, of a Virgin Mother. This mystery we celebrate each year becomes more and more refreshing as the corruption of morals advances.
What most distinguishes Christianity from all the religious theories of all times, and this in a striking way, is its morality. Of all the religions of which history makes mention, none has exalted virginity in its ethics and has attached more value to chastity, considered a heroic virtue of victory over oneself and of renunciation.
Never, at the same time, more than the Church, has a religious institution granted a more moving and reverent respect to marriage and the love of the spouses, which it compares to its own union with Christ. This is what makes, more than any other, the difference between Christian civilization and all other civilizations. Between all the moral data of antiquity, for example of Rome as well as elsewhere, and the Sermon on the Mount, there is an abyss on which it is not possible to establish a connecting bridge. These religious data are extremely important since they provide the foundation of public morality and its legislation in every civilization.
At the two most advanced periods of the Olympian civilization, the classical epochs of Athens and Rome, flourished a morality that Christianity could only describe as depravity with prostitution erected at the height of a religious cult and a governmental service.
That is why, when the message of purity and renunciation of Christianity arrived in conquered Greece and in Rome then at its pinnacle, it was in the crowds eaten away by the bitterness of disgust and shame like a refreshing dew, a message of beauty, consolation, recovery and hope. Above all, girls and women, till then simple animals of amusement, felt the truth and the reality of their souls, the nobility of their new consideration. It was they who, by their number and influence, by their new ideal and their sacrifices, made the rising force and finally the triumph of Christianity. This in turn exalted to a degree utterly unknown the beauty of pure youth, of virginity, of the sublime greatness of motherhood, and emancipated woman as the Marian cult developed.
All these beauties are drawn from this mystery of Christmas which returns for the two-thousandth and-seventeenth time. This is where the victory over the world lies. This is where we will draw strength to fight time and time against this exaltation of impurity, of adultery, against this filthy river out of the mouth of the infernal dragon, which is now unfortunately spread even by men from whose mouth, because they are the angels of the Lord, one should find knowledge of the law (cf. Mal., 2:7).
But for virginity and marriage to be exalted and protected as God wills, Christian leaders are needed, like the Magi, who come to prostrate themselves before the manger of the Savior of which they are the lieutenants. Leaders who will offer to the divine new-born King, the gold of their authority and their laws, the incense of their faith and their charity, and the myrrh of their mortified life united with the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. History shows us that there have been such leaders; let us pray that the Child-God will raise more in our own days.
Gloria in excelsis Deo, and in terra pax hominibus bonae voluntatis!