WEYDEN, Rogier van der
Of The Albe.
And how by the same is signified the most pure humanity, of our Blessed Saviour.
This garment is called Albe, of this Latin word Albedo, whiteness: whereby the precious Humanity of our Saviour is signified unto us, the which was formed by the holy Ghost, of the most pure substance of the Virgin Marie, which was most pure, (that is to say) without all spot of sin, either Original, or Actual.
How the Incarnation.
2. The putting on of the Albe, over the head of the Priest (wherewith he is all covered) ay put us in mind of the Incarnation of our Saviour, in the womb of the blessed Virgin, according to the words of the Angel, spoken unto her The holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the most highest shall overshadow thee. Luc.1.35.
How the garment of Innocency.
3. Next, this garment may signify unto us, the garment of Innocency, given unto us by Christ, in the Sacrament of Baptism. And may out us in mind, of our promise made therein, to lead continually, a pure, holy, & innocent life. ay away the old man, and put on the new man, which according to God, is created in justice Ephes.4.23.24.
How the garment of mockery.
4. It likewise represeneth, the white garment, which Herod put upon or Blessed Saviour, reputing him for a fool and so mocking, and deriding him, sent him back to Pilate.Luc.33.12
Of the holy Mass.
5. It also signifieth, the White garment of glory, wherewith we shall be gloriously clothed in the Kingdom of heaven, where we shall shine more bright, then the beams of the sun, as saith St. John. I saw a great multitude, clothed in white robes. Apoc.7.9.
How Penance and Mortification.
6. Again, this garment admonisheth us, that even as silk, or fine cloth, getteth that whiteness, by often beating, or knocking, which it hath not by nature: even so a man (especially a priest) should by works of Penance, and corporal castigations, attain to that sanctity by grace, which he hath not by nature.
How spiritual purity
7. The Priest in putting on this garment, prayeth saying, Dealhame, Domine,&c. Make me white, O Lord, and cleanse my heart, that I being whitened in the Blood of the Lamb, may enjoy eternal gladness. So that the Albe also, by its whiteness, representeth spiritual purity, and cleanness of soul, which is most requisite in him, that is, to administer before our Lord.
A Devout Exposition Of The Holy Masse 1622
By John Heigham