The Fear of the Lord Prepared Repose

From “Homily on the Lord’s Ascension,” Homilies on the Gospels (ca. 1170)

And then the Lord Jesus was taken up into heaven and sits at the right hand of God. Fear of the Lord, then, was taken up into heaven, where good desires ascend to God. And the fear of the Lord thus prepared repose for those who fear God… The disciples then went forth and preached everywhere with God assisting and confirming their speech with accompanying signs. They who had first been reclining in laziness went forth to good renown.

Hildegard of Bingen (1098-1179) was a twelfth century German nun, a polymath and visionary theologian,. She was an abbess for much of her adult life, founded a convent at Bingen, and was consulted by the great church leaders of her time for her wise counsel. She preached a series of homilies on the liturgical Gospels to members of the monastic communities that she led, marking her out as the Middle Ages’ only systematic female exegete. She is commemorated on September 17 on the liturgical calendars of several churches. 


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