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Divine Office Reflections | Tuesday in the Fourth Week of Advent

O Rex Gentium

O King of all the nations, the only joy of every human heart; O Keystone of the mighty arch of man: come and save the creature you fashioned from the dust.

Jesus has not only come to save man whom God fashioned from the dust, but to complete him. As the keystone, He is the final piece needed to hold man together and to make of him a strong and enduring structure.

In his letter to the Colossians, St Paul says of Christ, “all things were created through him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together.” But what is said in Colossians of all things, St Paul says in Ephesians specifically regarding the Church: “you are… built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the capstone. Through him the whole structure is held together and grows into a temple sacred in the Lord.”

For this reason, the Catechism teaches that the Church is “the universal sacrament of salvation... at once manifesting and actualizing the mystery of God’s love for men.” The holy Catholic Church then reveals in history the plan of God for the fullness of time, “to sum up all things in Christ, in heaven and on earth (Eph1:10)” and to raise the creature fashioned from the dust to “mature manhood, to the full stature of Christ (4:13).”

The Church is held together by the Keystone, Jesus Christ. Without Him the whole structure deteriorates. But through Him, and with Him, and in Him, the body of Christ is raised to the universal sacrament of God’s love for men. As members of His body, let us resolve to fix our eyes on Christ Jesus and receive Him anew at Christmas as the one who, like the keystone, holds us together and enables us to become the true and sacred temple of the Lord.

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