The Holy Family of Jesus, Mary, and Joseph

Today is the feast of the Holy Family of Jesus, Mary and Joseph.  God chose to send his Son onto this Earth and into a family.  He could have chosen some other way, but he chose life as a baby boy and a son in a family.  What’s more, he chose to have a pretty unremarkable upbringing.  Why did God choose family life?  What does this mean for us?

There must be something very special about families, even unremarkable families, that God saw in them and wanted his own Son to experience.  The experiences that children and parents get while living with each other are simply irreplaceable.  Because Christ chose to live in a family, we, like him, ought to have special respect for families.

One way we can show this respect is to encourage families to adopt the lofty vision of St. Paul: “put on, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, heartfelt compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience, bearing with one another and forgiving one another, if one has a grievance against another; as the Lord has forgiven you, so must you also do. And over all these put on love.”  What family would not want this for itself?

We must hold on to our Christian ideals, even despite the dizzying complexities and fragmentations that face today’s families.  God will govern our families both through their successes and failures, and every family faces failures.  Mary and Joseph seemed to be  failing as parents when the child Jesus went missing for days in the big city of Jerusalem, but they found him in the end.  They had to search for Christ, but in the end, they found him.  May your family do the same.

December 27th, 2015