Mystical City of God - Virgin Mary

By Sor Maria of Agreda


  INDEX   Book 4  Chapter  29    Verses:  691-701

691. In order to clothe the divine Infant in the small
tunic and put on his feet the sandals made by Her, the
most prudent Lady cast Herself on her knees before her
sweetest Son and addressed Him in the following words :
"Most high Lord, and Creator of heaven and earth, I
would wish to clothe Thee, if possible, in such a way
as thy Divinity deserves, and I would gladly have made
these garments, which are to cover Thee, from my heartblood;
but I know that the poor and insignificant cover
ings I now offer Thee are according to thy desires.
Pardon me, my Lord and Master, my faults and accept
the loving affection of her, who is but dust and ashes :
allow me to clothe Thee." The Infant Jesus was pleased
with the loving service of his purest Mother ; and there
upon She clothed and shod Him, setting Him upon his
feet. The tunic fitted Him perfectly, covering his feet
without hindering them in walking, and the sleeves ex
tended to the middle of his hands, although She had taken
no measure beforehand. The collar was cut out round,
without being open in front, and was somewhat raised
around the neck adjusting itself to the throat. Through
this opening the heavenly Mother passed it over the head
of the Infant; for the garment gracefully adjusted it
self according to her wishes. He never divested Him
self of this tunic, until the executioners themselves tore
it off to scourge and afterwards to crucify Him; for this
garment continually grew with Him, adjusting itself
to his body. The same happened also with the sandals
and with the undergarment, which the solicitous Mother
made for Him. None of all these articles of clothing
wore away or became old in the thirty-two years, nor
did the tunic lose its color or its newness, but remained
just as it had left the hands of the great Lady; nor did
any of them become soiled or filthy, but they preserved
their first cleanliness. The garment which the Redeemer
of the world laid aside in order to wash the feet of his
Apostles, was a mantle or cape, which He wore over
his shoulders ; and this also had been made by the Virgin
after they had returned to Nazareth. Like the other
clothing it grew with the Lord, was of the same color,
only a little darker and was woven in the same way.
692. Thus the infant Lord of the eternities was placed
on his feet, after having since his birth been wrapped
in swaddling-clothes and held for most of the time in
the arms of his most holy Mother (John 13, 4). He
was the most beautiful among the sons of men. The
angels were astounded at the humble and poor raiment
chosen by Him who clothes the heavens in light and
the fields with beauty. He walked freely on his feet in
the presence of his parents; but before strangers this
wonder remained for a time concealed, since the Queen
took Him in her arms when outsiders approached or when
ever they went abroad. Indescribable was the joy of the
heavenly Lady and of saint Joseph as they saw the In
fant walking about and exhibit such rare beauty. He
received nourishment at the breast of his purest Mother
until He was a year and a half old and no longer. His
meals thereupon were most frugal as well in quantity
as in quality. At first they consisted in broths mixed with
oil, and some fruits or fishes. While He was still in
process of growth She gave Him to eat three times a
day, as often as She had formerly given Him her milk;
in the morning, afternoon and at night. The divine Child
never asked for food ; but the loving Mother with thought
ful anxiety provided Him his meals at the proper time
until later on, when He was already grown up and would
not consent to eat oftener or at other hours than the
heavenly Spouses themselves. This was his rule until
He reached adult age, of which I will speak later on.
Whenever He took his meals with his parents they al
ways waited until He should pronounce the blessing at
the beginning and give thanks at the end.
693. From the time the Child Jesus was on his feet
He commenced to retire and spent certain hours of the
day in the oratory of his Mother. As the most prudent
Mother was anxious to know his wishes in regard to her
intercourse with Him, the Lord responded to her mute
appeal, saying: "My Mother, enter and remain with Me
always in order that thou mayest imitate Me in my works ;
for I wish that in thee be modeled and exhibited the high
perfection which I desire to see accomplished in the souls.
For if they had not resisted my first intentions (I Tim.
2, 4), they would have been endowed with my most
abundant and copious gifts; but since the human race
has hindered this, I have chosen thee as the vessel of all
perfection and of the treasures of my right hand, which
the rest of the creatures have abused and lost. Observe
me therefore in all my actions for the purpose of imitat
ing Me."
694. Thus the heavenly Lady was installed anew as
the Disciple of her most holy Son. Thenceforward passed
such great and hidden mysteries between these Two, that
not until the day of eternity will they be known. Many
times the divine Child prostrated Himself on the ground,
at others He was raised from the ground in the form
of a cross, earnestly praying to the eternal Father for
the salvation of mortals. In all this his most loving
Mother imitated Him. For to Her were manifest the
interior operations of his most holy soul, just as well
as the exterior movements of his body. Of this knowl
edge of most pure Mary I have spoken in other parts
of this history and it is necessary to point it out often,
because this was the source of the light which guided
Her in her holy life. It was such a singular blessing,
that all creatures together will not be able to understand
or describe it by their united powers. The great Lady
did not always enjoy visions of the Divinity; but always
the sight of the most holy humanity and soul of her Son
with all their activities. In a special manner She was
witness of the effects of the hypostatic and beatific union
of the humanity with the Divinity. Although She did
not always see this glory and this union substantially;
yet She perceived the interior acts by which his humanity
reverenced, loved and magnified the Divinity to which
it was united; and this privilege was reserved solely to
most holy Mary.
695. On these occasions it often happened that the
Child Jesus in the presence of his most holy Mother
wept and perspired blood, for this happened many times
before his agony in the garden. Then the blessed Lady
would wipe his face interiorly perceiving and knowing
the cause of this agony, namely the loss of the fore
known and of those who would be ungrateful for the
benefits of their Creator and Redeemer and in whom the
works of the infinite power and goodness of the Lord
would be wasted. At other times the blessed Mother
would find Him refulgent with heavenly light and sur
rounded by angels that sang sweet hymns of praise;
and She was made aware, that the heavenly Father was
pleased in his beloved and onlybegotten Son (Matth.
17, 5). All these wonders commenced from the time
when at the age of one year He began to walk, wit
nessed only by his most holy Mother, whose heart was
to be the treasure-house of his wonders. The works of
love, praise and worshipful gratitude, his petitions for
the human race, all exceed my ability to describe. I must
refer the understanding of it to the faith and piety of the
696. The Child Jesus grew in the admiration and es
teem of all that came to know Him. Having reached
the age of six years He began now and then to visit the
sick in the hospitals, seeking out the stricken ones and
mysteriously comforting and consoling them in their
afflictions. Many of the inhabitants of Heliopolis began
to know Him; the secret attractions of his Divinity and
sanctity drew toward Him the hearts of all, and many
offered Him gifts. These, according to the promptings
of his interior knowledge, He refused or accepted for
distribution among the poor. The admiration caused by
his wise counsels and his modest and considerate be
havior, caused many to extol and congratulate the parents
on such a Son. Although all of them were ignorant of
the mysteries and of the dignity of the Son and the
Mother ; yet the Lord of creation, being desirous of honor
ing his Mother, permitted them to reverence Her as far
as was possible under the circumstances, without their
learning the special reason for doing so.
697. Many of the children of Heliopolis gathered
around the Child Jesus, as it is natural with children of
similar age and condition. Since they were free from
great malice and were not given to inquire, whether He
was more than man, but freely admitted the heavenly
light, the Master of truth welcomed them as far as
was befitting. He instilled into them the knowledge of
God and of the virtues; He taught and catechised them
in the way of eternal life, even more abundantly than the
adults. As his words were full of life and strength, He
won their hearts and impressed his truths so deeply upon
them, that all those, who had this good fortune, after
wards became great and saintly men ; for in the course of
time they ripened in themselves the fruit of this heavenly
seed sown so early into their souls.
698. The blessed Mother was well-informed of all
these happenings. Whenever her most holy Son re
turned from these errands, in which He had fulfilled the
will of his eternal Father by looking after his flock, the
Queen and the angels prostrated themselves before her
divine Son and gave Him thanks for the benefits done to
those innocents, who did not yet know Him for their true
God, and She kissed his feet as those of the Highpriest
of heaven and earth (Heb. 4, 1). This She also
did whenever the Child was about to go forth; on such
occasions He would raise Her up from the earth in filial
reverence and love. The Mother also asked for his bless
ing upon all her undertakings; and She never lost an
occasion for practicing virtue with all the intensity of
her love and divine grace. Never was any grace in Her
without its fruit, but it operated in all its plenitude and
increased in operation. The great Lady sought new
means and ways of humiliating Herself, adoring the in
carnate Word by her genuflections and prostrations and
other most loving and profound ceremonies as outward
tokens of her prudence and holiness. This She attended
to with such wisdom, that She excited the admiration of
the angels themselves, who, interchanging among them
selves the praises of the Divinity, said to each other :
"Who is that pure Creature, so full of delight to our
Creator and her Son? (Cant. 1,2). Who is this One,
that so wisely and attentively honors and reverences the
Most High, far exceeding us all in her loving alertness
and attention?"
699. In his intercourse and conversation with his
parents, this most wonderful and beautiful Child, after
He had begun to walk and grow larger, showed more
gravity than when He was younger. The tender caresses,
which always had been tempered and measured, were now
withheld, for in his countenance shone forth such majesty
as a reflection of his hidden Deity, that, if He had not
mixed it with a certain sweetness and affability, reveren
tial fear would have prevented all intercourse with Him,
The heavenly Mother and saint Joseph felt the effects
of a divine power and efficacy, as well as the kindness and
devotedness of a loving Father, proceeding from his
countenance. Joined with this majesty and magnificence
was his filial affection toward his heavenly Mother, while
on the other hand He treated saint Joseph as one, who
had as well the name as the duties of a father toward
Him; and therefore He obeyed them both as a most de
voted Son obeys his parents. In his whole behavior
the incarnate Word practiced the virtues of obedience,
humility and human kindness with such an admirable
mixture of majesty and gravity, that his divine wisdom
shone forth in all his actions and that none of his
grandeur was impaired by triviality or smallness. The
heavenly Queen was most attentive to all these mys
teries and She alone, as far as a mere creature could,
comprehended befittingly the work of her most holy
Son and understood the ways of his infinite wisdom. I
would attempt the impossible to try to describe in human
words the effects of all his doings on her most pure and
prudent soul, or how closely She imitated his ineffable
sanctity. The souls which were converted and saved in
Heliopolis and in all Egypt, the sick that were cured,
and the wonders wrought during their seven years stay
in that country, cannot be enumerated : such a blessed
crime did the cruelty of Herod turn out to be for Egypt.
The goodness and wisdom of God draws from the very
wickedness and evils of sin the greatest good. If in one
direction men cast away his mercies and shut them out,
He Calls upon them in other directions to open their hearts
and admit his blessings (Job 34, 24). His ardent desires
to benefit the human race cannot be quenched by the floods
of our sins and ingratitudes.
700. My daughter, from the very beginning of this
history of my life thou wast made to understand, that
among other purposes, the Lord wished to call the at
tention of mortals to the debt contracted by their un
feeling forgetfulness of his divine love and of mine to
ward them. It is true that all his love is included and
made manifest in his having died on the Cross for them,
for this was the extremity of his immense charity (John
3, 16). But many ungrateful men are loath to remem
ber even this blessing. For such and for all others the
knowledge of what He did for them during the thirtythree
years should be a new incentive and spur of love ;
since each of his acts was worth an infinite price and
merited our eternal gratitude. The Almighty set me as
a witness to all of them: and I assure thee, that from
the first instant of his conception in my womb, He ceased
not to clamor to the Father for the salvation of men.
From that moment He began to embrace the Cross (Heb.
10, 5), not only in desire, but also as far as was pos
sible in effect, placing Himself in the position of one
crucified from his infancy and continuing these exercises
during his whole life. I also imitated Him in this, join
ing Him in his prayers and labors for mankind and in the
very first acts of his most sacred humanity by which He
rendered thanks for the salvation of men.
701. Let therefore mortals beware, lest I, who was a
Witness and Co-operatrix of this salvation, be not also a
Witness and Co-operatrix in the day of judgment, pro
claiming how well justified is the cause of God with men.
If on that day I most justly refuse my intercession to
those, who have foolishly despised and forgotten so many
and so great favors and blessings, the results of the divine
love of my Son and my own : what answer, what excuse
or evasion shall those then bring forward, who have been
so well informed, so much admonished and enlightened
by the truth? How can these ungrateful and pertina
cious mortals expect mercy of the most just and righteous
God, when He has given them sufficient and opportune
time, invited them so often, called them, waited and
worked for them, and conferred upon them immense
blessings, while they abused and wasted all of them in
the pursuit of vanity ? Fear, my daughter, this, the great
est of all blindnesses. Refresh ever the memory of the
most holy works of my Son and of me, and imitate them
with all thy fervor. Continue the exercises of the cross
under the guidance of obedience, in order to keep thy
self mindful of what thou must imitate and give thanks
for. Take notice at the same time, that my Son and
Lord could have redeemed the human race without suf600
fering so much and that He wished to increase his suf
ferings only on account of the immensity of his love
for souls. The return for such condescension should be,
that the creature content not itself with little, as is or
dinarily the case with ignorant men. Add thou virtue to
virtue and seek thereby evermore to meet all thy obliga
tions, imitating the Lord and me in our labors for the
salvation of the world. All thy merits offer up for
souls, uniting them with his merits in the presence of
the eternal Father.
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