Octave of Christmas: Feast of Mary, Mother of God

It has been 8 days since Christmas and sure there are some of us who are taking decorations down but there are four more days of Christmas. As we begin the New Year we celebrate Mary our heavenly mother.

We start the year off in the Book of Numbers with a blessing. The Lord tells Moses that Aaron and his sons should bless the Israelites by saying “May the Lord bless you and keep you! May the Lord let his face shine upon you, and be gracious to you! May the Lord look upon you kindly and give you peace!” It is a great blessing that extend upon us as well and it is a great way to start the year. For me this blessing is reminiscent of the Sabbath Prayer from Fiddler on the Roof. After we have been blessed we turn to Paul letter to the Galatians where we are reminded that we are all heirs of the Lord and we can all cry out “Abba, Father.” Finally we arrive at Luke’s Gospel once again and we hear about how shepherd came and did homage to the newborn Jesus and his parents as well. The shepherds also bring the message of the angels out into the world and the gospel says that Mary kept all these things and reflected upon them in her heart.  Then the gospel ends with it being eight days after Christmas and Jesus being circumcised and named.  Can we be more like Mary in this new year and keep the joy of Christmas alive in our heart and reflect upon it throughout the year.

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