O Wisdom, which camest out of the mouth of the Most High, and reachest from one end to another,
mightily and sweetly ordering all things: come and teach us the way of prudence.
Divine Worship: The Missal
‘“O Wisdom”, prays the Church late every Advent. In words inspired by the opening words of the great Hymn to Wisdom well into the Book of Ecclesiasticus, which forms the centrepiece of that late Jewish work, we find ourselves looking at the origin and nature of Wisdom... [W]e invoke Wisdom in terms of her ubiquity – she is everywhere, as the Wisdom of Solomon teaches… Whereas Ecclesiasticus on its on its own terms sees wisdom as a gift from God, the Book of Wisdom goes one stage further in viewing her as a kind of person separate from but derived from God. No wonder Wisdom came to be applied by early Christian writers to the third person of the Holy Spirit… But here she is applied to God himself: not specifically at the Christmas festival, but in the mystery of Advent. The Book of Wisdom teaches that a wise king prays for this divine attribute, not because she is everywhere, but because she comes from God and is of God; her origins explain her ubiquity, not the other way round’.
from Watching and Waiting: A Guide to the Celebration of Advent, 2007
by Kenneth Stevenson (1949-2011), Anglican Bishop of Portsmouth, 1995-2009
Fr Lee Kenyon