Feast of the Holy Family

The author of Sirach reminds us that God is the source of the authority of parents. As Sirach notes, “God who sets a father in honor over his children and confirms a mother’s authority over her sons.” God strengthens parents with wisdom to care for and raise their children, and guides children in the way of honor and respect for aging parents.

Abraham and Sarah are presented as models of faith in God who received the gift of Isaac in their old age. Beyond their child-bearing years, Abraham and Sarah put their faith in God’s word. Not knowing where they were to go or how their needs would be provided for, these models of faith trusted the power of God’s word and were blessed with the gift of life in Isaac.

Abraham and Sarah are models of faith to imitate as we strive to be missionary disciples of Jesus. Putting our faith in God’s word will bring new life to our hearts, minds, and families.

The same entrusting faith in God led Mary and Joseph to present the child Jesus in the temple, as described in the Gospel. In the sacred space of the temple holy men like Simeon, and holy women like Anna the prophetess, recognized the presence of the Son of God and expressed their faith in God with prayers of praise and thanksgiving. Their witness to faith inspires us to contemplate the icon of the Holy Family of Nazareth as we pray in faith, “speak to me, Lord.”

Question: How can the Holy Family of Nazareth be an icon of faith, hope, and love in the midst of the joys, responsibilities and challenges of family life?