Peace and Blessings to you!
God gives us the Holy family of Jesus, Mary and Joseph that is entirely human as a gift to encourage us an provide an example of how our families can be holy.
instructions we receive from Ben Sirach are words of wisdom. Employing
the principles of mutual respect and honor between children and parents
preserves family unity for life-long love. Listening, obeying, the
Word of the Lord guides us in the way of peace. The Letter to the
Colossians elaborates principles for Christian living for all families
and the Church community. Imagine a family that gathers to pray, sing
psalms, hymns and spiritual songs to the Lord! Hmm, the Holy Spirit is
going to dwell in them! The Gospel shows how God is always watching
over the family. God is the ultimate protector, provider and guide for
all families. Jesus taught us to call God “Our Father.”
The Holy Family we honor today was not a family of wealth or privilege. From the beginning, they were beset by problems. Mary’s pregnancy was outside the law and she was not officially married, Joseph was uncertain about what to do while she faced a death penalty. The birth of Jesus was traumatic by today’s standards, but they did find emergency shelter in a stable. They had some surprise visitors and then they had to flee for their lives. They lived in a foreign land as refugees not knowing the language or the customs of the people where they settled. They had nothing. We assume that Joseph found work, as a carpenter, and it was enough for them to live on. The one thing they did well that kept them together was love. They loved God and each other.
The story of
the Holy Family is an inspiration and guide for our families. The
readings and instructions we are given today, plus the example of Jesus,
Mary and Joseph show us how our homes and families stay together. We
will always have problems in life but when we put God first and follow
his instructions, when we commit ourselves to love, respect and honoring
each other, we create a holy sphere where children learn to trust God
and our families grow hardy and strong firmly rooted together in
Christ. God Bless you always! +++ Fr. Peter