Vol: 45, No.7 THE HOLY FAMILY ( B) December 31 2017  
The shepherds went in haste, and found Mary and Joseph and the Infant lying in a manger. (Lk 2:16)
Dear brothers and sisters, the feast of the Holy Family is the feast for all of us. We all belong to a family consisting of our parents, brothers and sisters. If we stay away from our homes for prolonged period of time we long for our homes and want to return to it. The Book of Genesis narrates very vividly that Adam felt lonely and his loneliness could be removed only when God created Eve. It is no accident that God foresaw a beautiful family atmosphere for his Son to grow and flourish. The family that God envisaged for his Son consisted of his mother Mary and foster father Joseph. The holy family of Nazareth is a model that every family can imitate. There was perfect harmony, understanding and freedom in the holy Family. Are our families a suitable dwelling place for its members? (Pause)
I Confess to almighty God....
Glory to God in the highest...
O God, who were pleased to give us the shining example of the Holy Family, graciously grant that we may imitate them in practising the virtues of family life and in the bonds of charity, and so, in the joy of your house, delight one day in eternal rewards. Through our Lord Jesus
Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.
(Sirach exhorts grown up children to respect their parents. He emphasizes that kindness shown to one’s parents will be rewarded).
A reading from the Book of Ecclesiasticus (3:2-6, 12-14)
The Lord honoured the father above the children, and he confirmed the right of the mother over her sons. Whoever honours his father atones for sins, and whoever glorifies his mother is like one who lays up treasure. Whoever honours his father will be gladdened by his own children, and when he prays he will be heard. Whoever glorifies his father will have long life, and whoever obeys the Lord will refresh his mother. O son, help your father in his old age, and do not grieve him as long as he lives; even if he is lacking in understanding, show forbearance; in all your strength do not despise him. For kindness to a father will not be forgotten, and against your sins it will be credited to you.
The Word of the Lord
PSALM (128)
Response: O blessed are those who fear the Lord and walk in his ways!
O blessed are those who fear the Lord and walk in his ways! By the labour of your hands you shall eat. You will be happy and prosper. R/
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