Tuesday, December 25, 2007
In the year two thousand nine hundred and fifty-seven from the flood;
In the year two thousand and fifteen from the birthday of Abraham
In the year one thousand five hundred and ten from Moses
and the going forth of the people of Israel from Egypt; In the year one thousand and thirty-two from the anointing of David as king;
In the sixty-fifth week according to the prophecy of Daniel;
In the one hundred and ninety-fourth Olympiad;
In the year seven hundred and fifty-two from the founding of the city of Rome;
In the forty-second year of the rule of Octavian Augustus;
In the sixth age of the world, when the whole world was at peace: [here the voice is raised:]
Jesus Christ, eternal God and Son of the eternal Father, being pleased to hallow the world by His most gracious coming, having been conceived of the Holy Ghost, and nine months having passed since His conception, having become Man, was born at Bethlehem in Juda of the Virgin Mary.
[All prostrate themselves: at the signal of the superior, they arise.]
The Nativity of Our Lord Jesus Christ according to the flesh.
A totum duplex feast of the first class.
At Barcelona in Spain, the birthday of St. Peter Nolasco, confessor, and founder of the Order of our Lady of Ransom for the Redemption of Captives. He was noted for his virtues and miracles. His feast is celebrated on January 28.
At Rome, in the cemetery of Apronianus, St. Eugenia, virgin. She was the daughter of St. Philip the martyr. In the time of the Emperor Galhenus, she showed many signs and virtues and added holy choirs of virgins to Christ. She suffered for a long time under Nicetus, prefect of the city, and at last her throat was cut with a sword.
At Nicomedia, the sufferings of several thousand holy martyrs who on Christmas day were assembled at Mass. The Emperor Diocletian ordered the doors of the church to be shut and a fire to be prepared around the building. A tripod with incense was set before the door. Then a herald proclaimed that they who desired to escape the fire should come out and offer incense to Jupiter. When the Christians unanimously declared they would gladly die for the sake of Christ, the church was set on fire and they were burned alive.
Thus, they were held worthy to be born in Heaven on the very day on which Christ was pleased to be born on earth for the salvation of the world.