Posted by: frburke23 | December 29, 2018

Feast of the Holy Family (December 30, 2018)

Feast of the Holy Family (December 30, 2018)
LUKE 2:41-52
Each year Jesus’ parents went to Jerusalem for the feast
of Passover,
and when he was twelve years old,
they went up according to festival custom.
After they had completed its days, as they were returning,
the boy Jesus remained behind in Jerusalem,
but his parents did not know it.
Thinking that he was in the caravan,
they journeyed for a day
and looked for him among their relatives and acquaintances,
but not finding him,
they returned to Jerusalem to look for him.
After three days they found him in the temple,
sitting in the midst of the teachers,
listening to them and asking them questions,
and all who heard him were astounded
at his understanding and his answers.
When his parents saw him,
they were astonished,
and his mother said to him,
“Son, why have you done this to us?
Your father and I have been looking for you with great anxiety.”
And he said to them,
“Why were you looking for me?
Did you not know that I must be in my Father’s house?”
But they did not understand what he said to them.
He went down with them and came to Nazareth,
and was obedient to them;
and his mother kept all these things in her heart.
And Jesus advanced in wisdom and age and favor
before God and man.
Scripture Challenge – Acts of the Apostles, chapter 27.
In the Gospel today, we hear the story of Joseph and Mary finding the child Jesus in the temple. Joseph and Mary were faithful Jews and followed the laws faithfully.
As we celebrate Holy Family Sunday, we must ask ourselves, “What makes a family holy?” All the stories of Mary and Joseph teach us that holiness comes from always seeking the will of God above all things. In fact, the family should be the place in which each member of the family is encouraged to find their vocation, their purpose, God’s mission for them in this life. The best gift that parents can give their children is helping them discern God’s will for their lives and encouraging them to follow it faithfully.
In fact, the best marriages flourish when each person seeks God’s will above all else. The best friendships occur when the friends fall in love together with the same God. Do you want to make your family holy? Seek the will of God above all else and encourage your family members to do the same.
I remember telling my Dad that I felt called to the priesthood. He calmly asked me, “Do you think you can be happy being a priest?” I responded with a question, “How did you know Mom was the right one for you?” He said, “When I met your Mother in high school, I knew she was the one.” I smiled and said, “Dad, that is exactly how I feel. I can’t explain this, but I just feel in my heart that God created me to be a priest.” My Dad said, “I understand that feeling. You’ve got my support.”
My Dad and Mom were both helping me seek God’s will. And they weren’t even Catholic at the time! My Dad and step-mom became Catholic about six years ago and they said their lives had never been better.
Do I seek the will of God above all else in my life?
Do I encourage my family members to seek God’s will?
Are my friendships based in God’s will?
Have a blessed Sunday. May each of our families grow in holiness now and throughout 2019.
Fr. Burke

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