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The Descent of the Holy Sophia

(September 8)


Let us call upon the Holy Sophia, the supernal mother of our souls, and celestial bride of our spirits: Daughter of Infinite Light, born of enlightened love; merciful and compassionate, embodiment of perfect wisdom; begotten in Eternity, beyond Time and Space, With what words shall we praise Thee, or with what thoughts comprehend Thy majesty? Utterance must profane Thee; silence itself can bear witness to Thee. How shall we extoll Thee? In what shall we shadow forth Thy great glory among us?


The lesson is taken from the the Book of the Wisdom of Solomon:

Wisdom reacheth from one end of the world to the other; mightily and sweetly doth she order all things. In that she is conversant with God, she hath magnified her nobility; yea, the Lord of all things Himself loved her. For she is privy to the mysteries of the knowledge of God, and a lover of His works. If riches be a possession to be desired in this life, what is richer than wisdom, that worketh all things? And if prudence work, who of all that are is a more cunning worker than she? If a man love righteousness, her labours are virtues; for she teacheth temperance and prudence, justice and fortitude, than which men can have nothing more profitable in their life. By means of her I shall obtain immortality, for she is the mother of fair love, and of patience and perseverance, and of holy hope. Thou shalt put her on as a robe of honour, and shalt put her about thee as a crown of joy.


The gospel is taken from the Gospel according to St. Phillip:

The Sophia whom they call barren is the mother of the angels. And the consort of Christ is Mary Magdalen. The Lord loved her more than all the disciples, and kissed her on her mouth often. The others said to him: "Why do you love her more than all of us?" The Saviour answered and said to them: "Why do I not love you like her?" Some said: Mary conceived of the Holy Spirit. They are in error. What they are saying they do not know. When did a woman ever conceive of a woman? Mary is the virgin whom no power defiled, who is anathema to the Hebrews, the apostles and ignorant men. This is the Virgin whom no power defiled. There were three who walked with the Lord at all times, Mary his mother and her sister and Magdalene, whom they called his consort. For Mary was his mother and his sister and his consort.


A Homily for the Descent of the Holy Sophia

Presented by the Most Reverend Stephan A. Hoeller, bishop of the Ecclesia Gnostic


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