Sunday, December 31, 2023, Feast of the Holy Family

Episode 13 December 29, 2023 00:05:15
Sunday, December 31, 2023, Feast of the Holy Family
Sundays with Bishop Ken
Sunday, December 31, 2023, Feast of the Holy Family

Dec 29 2023 | 00:05:15


Hosted By

Little Books of the Diocese of Saginaw

Show Notes

Today Bishop Ken asks us to think about our place in the holy family of God. 

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Episode Transcript

Good day. Today is Sunday, December 31, the Feast of the Holy Family. We begin today with a quote about joy from the late Pope Benedict XVI. He said, ‘Joy is the true gift of Christmas, not expensive presents that demand time and money. We can transmit this joy simply: With a smile, with a kind gesture, with some small help, with forgiveness. Let us give this joy and the joy given will be returned to us . . . Let us pray that this presence of God’s liberating joy will shine in our lives.’ On this day last year, Pope Benedict XVI died at the age of 95. He was a teacher and theologian who many remember as the first pope in almost 600 years to resign. His decision to retire to a life of prayer and study led to the conclave that elected Pope Francis as his successor. The two popes lived in the Vatican, paving the way for future “popes emeritus” to do the same. Now to our Gospel. When the days were completed for their purification according to the law of Moses, Mary and Joseph took Jesus 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. (Lk 2:22-24) Luke wants me to know that Mary and Joseph were devout and pious in their religious practices, always faithful to the law of Moses. (In this brief passage, Luke mentions the “law” three times.) There is much to be said for this kind of faithfulness to religious practices. There’s more to holiness than external practices, but religious traditions are important. How did Mary and Joseph know about these traditions? By belonging to the Jewish community and joining in its rituals. Over these past 2,000 years, Christians have developed traditions. Some of these go back to the early days of the Church. How do I know about them, and know which ones are important? By belonging to a parish and joining in its rituals. I’m about to begin the Year of Our Lord 2024. It would be a good time for me to think about how much these ancient practices are part of my life. Or, to put it another way, it would be a good time for me to think about how much I am part of and tuned in to the life of the Church.

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