Dedication of the Archbasilica of Our Lord and Savior
Comprehensive Catholic Commentary
Fr. George Leo Haydock
Editor's Note: This special feature provided by John Gregory with the Haydock Commentary found at the bottom of each page of the Douay-Rheims Bible continues during November. With the type so small in most bibles, we publish it here in larger type in conjunction with the Epistle and Gospel for the Sunday Mass, with the cogent comprehensive Catholic Commentary penned by Father George Leo Haydock. For the Double of the Second Class Feast of the Dedication of the Archbasilica of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, which supersedes the Twenty-Sixth Sunday after Pentecost this year, Father Haydock provides a few commentaries on both the Epistle and Gospel to show how the former dovetails into the latter for St. Paul's words "Behold the Tabernacle of God with men" is Jesus and our Lord confirms as such when St. Luke chronicles Christ's mission to seek and save that which was lost. It could not have been done by Abraham or any who followed for it was God Himself Who came down from Heaven and it is the Lateran Basilica in Rome which is considered the Archbasilica of Our Lord and Savior. Though there are not many commentaries by Fr. Haydock for this feast, there really doesn't need to be since the Scriptures say it so clearly.
Epistle: Apocalypse 21: 2-5
And I John saw the holy city, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of Heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.
Commentary on Verse 2 Coming down from God out of Heaven. By the city we must understand its citizens, The Angels and saints. (Wi.) – Justice, innocence, the good works of the saints, are the ornaments of the inhabitants of this new Jerusalem, the Church triumphant. If the world of the old Adam has appeared so beautiful, so magnificent, good God, what will be the riches of that which is made for Jesus Christ, the second Adam, and for His members! O Jesus! Father of the world to come, render us worthy of this new and everlasting world, and give us a disgust, a mortal hatred, for that which perishes, and which is the cause of our perdition.
And I heard a great voice from the throne, saying: Behold the tabernacle of God with men, and He will dwell with them. And they shall be His people; and God Himself with them shall be their God.
Commentary on Verse 3 Behold the tabernacle of God with men, inasmuch as God’s elect shall there dwell with Him for ever and ever. (Wi.)
And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes: and death shall be no more, nor mourning, nor crying, nor sorrow shall be any more, for the former things are passed away.
And He that sat on the throne, said: Behold, I make all things new. And He said to me: Write, for these words are most faithful and true.
Gospel: St. Luke 19: 1-10
At that time, Jesus entering in, walked through Jericho.
And behold, there was a man named Zacheus, who was the chief of the publicans, and he was rich.
Commentary on Verse 2 What a sinner can despair when he sees the Saviour of mankind seeking to save him; when he beholds even a publican and a rich man, at the same time, who, as our Saviour informs us in another place, are so seldom truly converted, brought to the light of faith, and the grace of a true conversion! (Saint Ambrose) – Zacheus (who as a farmer of the customs, not a collector, as some falsely imagine) immediately hearkened to the interior voice of the Almighty, calling him to repentance; he made no delay, and therefore deserved immediately not only to see, but to eat, drink, and converse with Jesus. (Saint Cyril) – Behold here the three steps of his conversion: 1. an ardent desire of seeing Jesus; 2. the honourable reception he gave Him in his house; 3. the complete restitution of all ill-acquired property.
And he sought to see Jesus who He was, and he could not for the crowd, because he was low of stature.
And running before, he climbed up into a sycamore tree, that he might see Him; for He was to pass that way.
And when Jesus was come to the place, looking up, He saw him, and said to him: Zacheus, make haste and come down; for this day I must abide in thy house.
And he made haste and came down; and received Him with joy.
And when all saw it, they murmured, saying, that He was gone to be a guest with a man that was a sinner.
But Zacheus standing, said to the Lord: Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor; and if I have wronged any man of any thing, I restore him fourfold.
Jesus said to him: This day is salvation come to this house, because he also is a son of Abraham.
Commentary on Verse 9 Zacheus is here styled a son of Abraham; i.e. his spiritual son, a partaker of the promises made to Abraham concerning the Messias: not that he was actually born of his seed, but because he imitated his faith; and as Abraham at the voice of God, left the land and house of his father; so Zacheus renounced his goods and possessions, by giving them to the poor. (Venerable Bede)
For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.