Feast of the Holy Family of Jesus, Mary and Joseph
by Fr. Ivan Olmo

“He who obeys his father brings comfort to his mother.”  When we look into the eyes of the Holy Family, we should be able to see our own family, our true home, the place we long to belong.  Piercing their sweet image, looking into their hearts, seeing their family portrait, understanding their history, and partaking in their journey, we find meaning in our own lives.  We can understand perhaps a little bit more the amazing grace our heavenly Father has given unto us.  We can personally experience the purpose of our own being and the gracious gift of being born into such a sacred family.  Created in God’s image and made in the holiness of God, we belong to this perfect family graciously given to all humanity by our heavenly Father as a gift and model to aspire to become.  Not just a reflection or a representation of a perfect family but God’s Holy Family, which creates us and forms us anew.  Conceived anew through the lifesaving waters of baptism, brought forth from the baptismal womb of Holy Mother Church, we are once again holy, members of the household of God, heirs to his glorious kingdom and citizens of our true homeland, heaven.  When we see beyond ourselves, our own lives, our own problems, we can see our own family, the family of God.  Joseph is a man of honor, honoring God our Father, honoring Mary our Mother.  Mary is a woman of faith keeping God’s word deep in her heart and acting upon on it.  Jesus is a beloved child of God, forever obedient to his Father in heaven, forever obedient to his parents on earth and forever committed to us, his family in spirit and in truth.  As members of this holy family, we take on their virtues, we learn from their faith.  We learn to model their behavior and to live out their trust in God and their love for one another.  It was not always easy for the Holy Family, as we like to think and believe.  We believe God was always with them, providing for them but find it difficult to believe that God is also with us, providing for us for all eternity.  Jesus, Mary and Joseph experienced a life as we know it.  They experienced the unfortunate circumstances and effects of sinful, disobedient humanity.  There was certainly sorrow and terror, poverty and rejection, illness and death; however, they remained obedient in faith, confident in prayer, joyful in the Lord, always submissive, actively submitting to God’s holy and divine will.

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