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Daily Gospel Reading - January 2, 2012 PDF Print E-mail

John 1:19-28

 

John the Baptist’s Testimony to Himself

 

19This is the testimony of John. When the Jews from Jerusalem sent priests and Levites [to him] to ask him, “Who are you?” 20he admitted and did not deny it, but admitted, “I am not the Messiah.” 21So they asked him, “What are you then? Are you Elijah?” And he said, “I am not.” “Are you the Prophet?” He answered, “No.” 22So they said to him, “Who are you, so we can give an answer to those who sent us? What do you have to say for yourself?” 23He said:/ “I am ‘the voice of one crying out in the desert,/ “Make straight the way of the Lord,” ’/ as Isaiah the prophet said.” 24Some Pharisees were also sent. 25They asked him, “Why then do you baptize if you are not the Messiah or Elijah or the Prophet?” 26John answered them, “I baptize with water; but there is one among you whom you do not recognize, 27the one who is coming after me, whose sandal strap I am not worthy to untie.” 28This happened in Bethany across the Jordan, where John was baptizing.

 

Reflection:

I am not the Messiah. John the Baptist tells people that he is not the Awaited One and is unworthy to untie the straps of the Messiah’s sandals. He is a sign pointing to Jesus, a voice preparing the way of the Lord.

 

Humble and honest, John does not take advantage of his position or his blood relationship with Jesus in order to be popular or to win prominence for himself. He does not mislead, flatter, or confuse his listeners.

 

John makes us realize the need to accept our limitations. There will always be people better, greater, and more important than we. We do not have a monopoly of intelligence and knowledge. We need others and can learn from them.

 

Besides, there is more to life than medals, plaques, and trophies. God is infinitely more than anything and anyone in this world. Let us make God number one in our lives. After the example of John the Baptist, let our motto be, “He must increase; I must decrease.”

 

In what direction are our lives heading? Are we bringing other people to God and the fullness of life?

 
Daily Gospel Reading - January 1, 2012 PDF Print E-mail

Luke 2:16-21



The Visit of the Shepherds

16[The shepherds] went in haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the infant lying in the manger. 17When they saw this, they made known the message that had been told them about this child. 18All who heard it were amazed by what had been told them by the shepherds. 19And Mary kept all these things, reflecting on them in her heart. 20Then the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen, just as it had been told to them.

21When eight days were completed for his circumcision, he was named Jesus, the name given him by the angel before he was conceived in the womb.

 

Reflection:

Mary kept all these things, reflecting on them. On this first day of the New Year, we honor Mary the Mother of God, the Mother of the Church. For this stage in our journey of faith and pilgrimage to Jesus, the Gospel suggests that we reflect on three reactions to Jesus’ coming.

 

The shepherds show understanding. When they see the infant lying in the manger, they make known the message that has been told them about the child. Their accepting attitude leads them to glorify and praise God.

 

Those who have heard the shepherds are amazed by what has been told them. Though we are not told whether they will later go to see the Child Jesus, on our part, we are called to share his good news with others.

 

Mary reflects on everything that happens. She patiently waits for the unfolding of God’s plans for her. She accepts things as they are and ponders on them in the silence of her heart. Her attitude allows God to take control of her very life. With love, she follows God’s will and God’s plans.

 

As we welcome the New Year, let us open ourselves to God’s plans. When we do not get what we ask for, let us accept God’s will, firmly believing that God loves us and wants only what is best for us. With love and patience let us wait for the unfolding of God’s plans. Even failures must be perceived as blessings.

 

Wish your loved ones God’s blessings for the New Year: “The Lord bless you and keep you!

The Lord let his face shine upon you and be gracious to you!

The Lord look upon you kindly and give you peace!”

(Nm 6:23-26).

 
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