Thursday, December 24, 2009

The Proclaimation of the Birth of Christ

Traditionally a formal “Proclamation of the Birth of Christ” is recited or sung at the beginning of Midnight Mass on Christmas Eve. The text situates the birth of Jesus Christ within the context of salvation history. Jesus is truly a historical figure. Our present system of the calendar places Him at the center. This proclamation begins with the creation of the world, mentioning key events in the history of Israel, and concludes with the birth of Jesus Christ, our Lord, Savior, Redeemer and King.

"The twenty-fifth day of December in the 5,099th year of the creation of the world from the time in the beginning when God created the heaven and the earth, the 2,957th year after the flood, the 2,015th year from the birth of Abraham, the 1,510th year from Moses and the going forth of the people of Israel from Egypt, the 1,032nd year from David's being anointed king, and the 65th week according to the prophecy of Daniel and the 194th Olympiad, the 752nd year from the foundation of the city of Rome, the 42nd year of the reign of Octavius Augustus, the whole world being at peace, in the sixth age of the world, Jesus Christ, the Eternal God and the Son of the Eternal Father willing to consecrate the world by his most merciful coming, being conceived by the Holy Spirit and nine months having passed since his conception, (all kneel) was born in Bethlehem of Judea of the Virgin Mary being made man (rise), the nativity of Our Lord Jesus Christ according to the flesh."

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