Fidelity to the Word
Our Lord and His Holy Apostles at the Last Supper

A blog dedicated to Christ Jesus our Lord and His True Presence in the Holy Mystery of the Eucharist

But Christ having come a high priest of the good things to come, through the greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this creation, nor yet through the blood of goats and calves, but through his own blood, entered in once for all into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption.

Hebrews 9:11-12

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

The Most Holy Name of Jesus

Yesterday we celebrated the Feast of the Circumcision. Today, in the traditional calendar, or tomorrow, using the new Calendar, we celebrate the name our Savior received.

This Jewish website comments on the naming of a baby boy:

With the fulfillment of the commandment of milah [circumcision], G-d changed Abram's name to Abraham, giving him a totally new persona to complement his new role as the "father of a great nation." For this reason, we name a baby boy at his Brit.

According to Jewish tradition, the name of a person describes his or her essence. It provides identity and generational connection. It begins the process of shaping a human being. A name can influence the behavior of the person and provide a spiritual connection between the individual and his soul.

A name carries enormous potential. It can define the individual or describe his personality. It can be a portent for the future or a wish that the person live up to the potential expressed in the meaning of the name. It is important, therefore, to give much thought to a child's shem kodesh, sacred or Hebrew name.


The name of our Lord, announced by the angel, certainly defined or described Him. The Holy Name Jesus (or Yahshua in Hebrew) means "Saviour", and it is through Him that His people is saved. The online Catholic Encyclopedia says the Holy Name, "when invoked with confidence":

  • brings help in bodily needs, according to the promise of Christ: "In my name They shall take up serpents; and if they shall drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them: they shall lay their hands upon the sick, and they shall recover". (Mark 16:17-18) In the Name of Jesus the Apostles gave strength to the lame (Acts 3:6; 9:34) and life to the dead (Acts 9:40).
  • gives consolation in spiritual trials. The Name of Jesus reminds the sinner of the prodigal son's father and of the Good Samaritan; it recalls to the just the suffering and death of the innocent Lamb of God.
  • protects us against Satan and his wiles, for the Devil fears the Name of Jesus, who has conquered him on the Cross.
  • obtains for us every blessing and grace for time and eternity, for Christ has said: "If you ask the Father anything in my name he will give it you." (John 16:23) Therefore the Church concludes all her prayers by the words: "Through Our Lord Jesus Christ", etc.


Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form he humbled himself and became obedient unto death, even death on a cross. Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Philippians 2:5-11


This essay (by the sort of fine protestant preacher that really ought to be Catholic) has some comments on the most holy name of Jesus that tie in with the pro multis controversy which, God willing, will soon be behind us.


Colleen Hammond joins the Right Reverend Arthur Roche in an appeal to show reverence for the holy name of Jesus. Bishop Roche was mentioned previously in this blog, after he gave an admirable speech to a meeting of the American bishops. He is chairman of ICEL! Until recently, I would not have been able to use the words ICEL and admirable in the same sentence -- the ICEL was responsible for the execrable translation of the new Mass we currently use. A revised translation will be released within the next couple years. Slowly, slowly, slo-o-owly over the years and decades, the Church Militant is reorienting herself back towards right worship of the Divine.

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