With Mary and Joseph Turned Towards Jesus

Homily for Sunday in the Octave of Christmas

by Fr. Tommy Lane

Today we reflect on the Holy Family of Nazareth, Jesus, Mary and Joseph because we all grow up in a family and the Holy Family has much to teach us about family life. In the Christmas pictures and in the cribs, we see that Mary and Joseph are turned towards the baby Jesus. Next we see the shepherds beside Mary and Joseph also turned to Jesus. I think we could see our families in the place of the shepherds, we are with Mary and Joseph turned to Jesus. The only way for peace and love and happiness in our families is to be with Mary and Joseph and turn to Jesus. How do we do this? Through prayer. Daily prayer. Daily prayer as a family. If you do not want a friendship to die, you keep in contact with the friend. Prayer is our way to reach out to God every day. Sometimes prayer may not be easy but even then the time spent with God is not a waste but is time given generously to God. Time with God is always brings a blessing. The Rosary is a beautiful way to pray as a family and at the same time also a beautiful gift of roses to give to Our Lady. Reading a little piece of Sacred Scripture every day is also very helpful. Mary and Joseph turned to Jesus is a reminder to us that our families also are to be always turned to Jesus with Jesus in the center. I think we could see our families in the place of the shepherds; we are with Mary and Joseph turned to Jesus. The only way for peace and love and happiness in our families is to be with Mary and Joseph and turn to Jesus.

The Holy Family looked like an ordinary family that lived in a very ordinary town but they were far from ordinary. The Holy Family was a lowly humble family but because they were totally turned to God, totally given to God, they became the greatest family on earth. Mary and Joseph offered two birds in sacrifice when Jesus was presented in the temple which meant they could not afford the more expensive offering of a lamb. They were not the richest family in town. For a time, for safety, they had to become refugees in Africa to spare the life of baby Jesus from Herod. When Jesus ministered, the people of Nazareth and his cousins thought he was out of his mind. So there were many circumstances that did not make the Holy Family look glorious but they are the model for our families. Our family may look ordinary and humble but what matters is not what others think of us but that we are living with God. The Holy Family looked like an ordinary family that lived in a very ordinary town but they were far from ordinary. Our family may look ordinary and live in an ordinary town but what matters is that we are with Mary and Joseph and turned to Jesus in prayer.

© Fr. Tommy Lane 2017

This homily was delivered in Austria

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The Holy Family and Our Families 2015

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