Tag Archives: solemnity of mary

Solemnity of Mary

To watch Fr. Joe’s Homily from the Solemnity of Mary: CLICK HERE!

In my New Year’s Day message to the Parish that will be sent to the Parish at noon on January 1st, I share that the first reading from Numbers has always had a special place in my life…  As a newly ordained priest, it is the custom that “first blessings” are shared.  And it was this blessing from the Book of Numbers that I used some 46 years ago.

And it seems to me that this reading is most appropriate for our world, for each of us, in the midst of a pandemic.

Appropriate that we be reminded that God cares for us, that God blesses us in good times and in times of trouble, like a pandemic…

The pain and sorrow, sickness and death, and all that is not good about a pandemic cannot be dismissed, it is real.  But not to be dismissed is the presence of God, the blessings of God, these past 12 months…

The blessing of health care workers in their care of the sick…

The blessing of the outreach to those in need, as seen in the many food distributions in the past months…

The blessing of being able to “take a breath” from the every second hecticness that seemed to be part of life before COVID…

The blessing of and appreciation of others, beginning with our families…

How were you blessed in 2020???   How were you a blessing to others in 2020???

May we continue to grow in knowing and appreciating the love, the blessings of God – for us and others in the coming year… and may we grow in being a blessing to one another in the year to come and beyond as sons and daughters of God.

The Feast of Mary, the Mother of God

In these days since Christmas I have been asking some of the children to tell me one of the gifts they got for Christmas.  And of all the answers, I loved the one child who said, “I got a pillow” to which I responded is it a “My Pillow”?

Well no matter the Christmas gifts we might have received, the best Christmas gift ever given is Christ Himself.

Today, the Church honors the woman through whom the gift came into the world.

Mary gave birth not simply to the “long awaited Messiah,” in fact she gave birth to the Son of God who we have come to understand is fully human and fully divine.

On this New Year’s Day we celebrate not simply the Good News, but the best news!

GOD LOVES US more than we can even imagine, and the gift of Jesus, the gift of God’s love, we are also asked to give as a gift…

In a very real way, we must bring Jesus into the world through our words (our evangelization; our sharing the Great News), but also bring Jesus into the world through our lives of caring, sharing and so much more…

Lives that share the BEST NEWS EVER during this NEW YEAR, that God loves you and me and every person, we encounter every day of our lives…

May this new year bring us closer and closer to having 2020 vision when it comes to seeing God among us.  When it comes to being an instrument of God’s love, peace and so much more this New Year 2020.

Now that might just be the Best New Year’s Resolution for 2020 too.

The Solemnity of Mary

When meeting with parents prior to the Baptism of their child, we discuss the Baptism Ritual.  Part of the ritual is the blessing of the child by the Priest, parents and godparents.  I mention to the parents that blessing someone is not just something a Priest can do, but something we can all do.  I remind parents that a blessing, wanting God’s blessings upon one’s child, wanting the best for one’s child is certainly the wish and prayer of all parents.

I go on to share that blessing one’s child is not something that can only be done at Baptism, but blessing one’s child is something that can be done all the days of their lives, by parents.

  • A blessing before going to bed.
  • A blessing on the first day of school.
  • A blessing as a child prepares for exams.
  • A blessing as a child prepares for marriage. (and on the list can go…)

Of course, we can all bless one another in any number of ways every day.  We certainly bless one another as we go about our daily lives faithfully, conscientiously and lovingly.

Just maybe this new year and the Lord’s instruction to Moses of how to bless the people of Israel, might get us thinking about the people we might add to our list of people to bless.

Maybe this year we might:

  • Bless another in our prayers for them.
  • Bless others in our prayer with one another (the prayer we call the Mass, each weekend)
  • Bless another with a visit or a phone call (maybe on a regular basis, not just one & done)
  • Bless another with some help or assistance.
  • Bless others with an attitude of gratitude, with our words of appreciation.
  • Bless others with our cooperation.
  • Bless others (family, friends, co-workers) with a lived faith daily.

And a very interesting thing seems to happen when we make a conscious effort to be a blessing to one another and to others… we too are blessed!

May the blessings we receive and share in today and every day during this new year — allow us to be that same blessing of God to others every day during this new year!