“Christ, the only-begotten Son of God, the true Sun of Justice, so shone upon the earth as not to leave the heavens, remaining there eternally, but coming hither for a time; there determining the everlasting day, here enduring the day of humanity; there living perpetually without the passage of time, here dying in time…; there remaining in life without end, here freeing our life from the destruction of death…. There God is with God; here He is God and Man. There He is Light of Light; here, the Light which enlightens every man…. The Lord took the form of a servant so that man might be turned to God…. The Word of the Father, by whom all time was created, was made flesh and was born in time for us. He, without whose divine permission no day completes its course, wished to have one day for His human birth. In the bosom of His Father He existed before all the cycles of ages; born of an earthly mother…. The Maker of man became man that He…the Bread, might be hungry; that He, the Fountain, might thirst; that He, the Light, might sleep; that He, the Way, might be wearied by the journey; that He, the Truth, might be accused by false witnesses; that He, the Judge of the living and the dead, might be brought to trial by a mortal judge; that He, Justice, might be condemned by the unjust; that He, Discipline, might be scourged with whips; that He, the Foundation, might be suspended upon a cross; that Courage might be weakened; that Security might be wounded; that Life might die. To endure these and similar indignities for us, to free us, unworthy creatures, He who existed as the Son of God before all ages, without a beginning, deigned to become the Son of Man…. He did this although He who submitted to such great evils for our sake had done no evil and although we, who were the recipients of so much good at His hands, had done nothing to merit these benefits.”
St. Augustine of Hippo (354–430), from “Sermon 191” in The Fathers of the Church: St. Augustine, Sermons on the Liturgical Seasons, translated by Sister Mary Sarah Muldowney (Catholic University of America Press, 1959), 27–29. Cited in New City Catechism, commentary on question 21.