Holy Family (José Antonio Pagola)

Ross Reyes DizonHomilies and reflections, Year CLeave a Comment

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Today is Christian Family Day. It is a feast that was recently established so that we Christians might celebrate and delve into what could be a family project that is understood and lived out in the spirit of Jesus.

It is not enough to defend abstractly the value of the family. It is not sufficient either to imagine family life according to the model of the family of Nazareth, idealized from our concepts about the traditional family. Following Jesus may sometimes demand that we question and transform patterns and customs that are deeply rooted in us.

For Jesus the family is not something absolute and untouchable. There is still more. What is decisive is not the blood family, but that great family that we humans have to keep building by listening to the wishes of the one Father of all. Even Jesus’ parents will have to learn this, not without problems and conflicts.

According to Luke’s account, Jesus’ parents, distraught, look for him on finding out that he has left them without worrying about them. How could he do this? His mother reproaches him when she finds him: Son, why have you done this to us? Your father and I have been looking for you with great anxiety. Jesus surprises them with an unexpected answer: “Why were you looking for me? Did you not know that I must be in my Father’s house?

His parents did not understand him. Only by delving into his words and into his behavior in front of his family will they gradually discover that for Jesus what is first is the family of humanity: a society where people treat others more solicitously as brothers and sisters, more fairly, and are in greater solidarity with one another, as God wants it.

We cannot responsibly celebrate today’s feast without listening to the challenge of our faith.

  • What are our families like? Do they live committed to a better and more human society, or are they locked up exclusively in their own interests? Do they, in educating members, foster solidarity, pursuit of peace, sensitivity toward the needy, compassion, or do they teach them to spend life looking for insatiable comfort, the greatest profit, and forgetfulness of everyone else?
  • What is going on in our homes? Do we nurture faith, remember Jesus Christ, and learn to pray, or do we only transmit indifference, unbelief and emptiness of God? Are we being educated to live with a responsible moral conscience that is healthy and consistent with Christian faith, or do we favor a superficial lifestyle, devoid of goals and ideals, of criteria and ultimate meaning?

December 27, 2015
Holy Family (C)
Luke 2, 41-52

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