FIFTH DAY WITHIN THE OCTAVE OF THE NATIVITY OF THE LORD DECEMBER 29, 2018


Mass Readings for the Day

A Reading from the holy Gospel according to Luke 2:22-35

When the days were completed for their purification according to the law of Moses, the parents of Jesus took him up to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord, just as it is written in the law of the Lord, Every male that opens the womb shall be consecrated to the Lord, and to offer the sacrifice of a pair of turtledoves or two young pigeons, in accordance with the dictate in the law of the Lord. Now there was a man in Jerusalem whose name was Simeon. This man was righteous and devout, awaiting the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him. It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he should not see death before he had seen the Christ of the Lord. He came in the Spirit into the temple; and when the parents brought in the child Jesus to perform the custom of the law in regard to him, he took him into his arms and blessed God, saying: “Lord, now let your servant go in peace; your word has been fulfilled: my own eyes have seen the salvation which you prepared in the sight of every people, a light to reveal you to the nations and the glory of your people Israel.” The child’s father and mother were amazed at what was said about him; and Simeon blessed them and said to Mary his mother, “Behold, this child is destined for the fall and rise of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be contradicted (and you yourself a sword will pierce) so that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed.”

REFLECTION:

“Behold, this child is destined for the fall and rise of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be contradicted (and you yourself a sword will pierce) so that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed.”

Mother Mary must have been so overjoyed to bring her son, Jesus, to God. This “handmaid of the Lord” must have felt the fulfillment of her motherhood by presenting her child, the Messiah, to God. In spite of this good news and joyous celebration, Simeon sends her a message to prepare her for the future. God knows the sinful ways of man will cause discord. God, in His loving compassion, takes care of the Mother of His child. He prepares Mary to meet the ways of the world and still remain with Him.

God told Mother Mary, through Simeon, the life Jesus was destined to live and the sorrow that would fill her own heart. As children of God, the Father places people in our paths to help us understand the depths our hearts will reach in doing the will of God. His gentle warnings and foreknowledge help prepare us to live according to His plan in a sinful world. This great love God has for us reveals the power and greatness of God in this world of desolation.

As a small child, we think about what we are going to be when we grow-up. Some want to spend their lives serving others, some want to build, create and construct, and others want to lead in politics and justice. In all honesty, all I ever wanted to be was a mother. I never wanted a career in this world. I wanted to spend my life to bring forth the children God has destined to send me and raise my children in a home filled with God’s love. May all mothers see the value of being a mother, no matter the contradictions of the future. It is a holy vocation created by God, and is designed for women to remain with Him. May every mother be overjoyed in bringing their children to God.


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