Sunday, January 1, 2012
Solemnity of Mary, the Mother of God
Writing about the events surrounding the Incarnation of our Lord, the author of Luke's Gospel, in the passage we read at Mass today, tells us, "And Mary kept all these things, reflecting on them in her heart" (Luke 2:19). So, the new year begins as the last year ended, reflecting on the mystery of the Incarnation of the Son of God. However, today we are reminded that Jesus is Mary's son, too.
St. Paul, writing to the Galatians, states the matter simply, "When the fullness of time had come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to ransom those under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons" (Gal. 4:4-5). Paul is not content to leave us with an abstraction. Rather, he insists that our adoption as God's children, which is only possible in and through the Incarnation, can be verified in reality, that is, through experience: "As proof that you are children, God sent the spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying out, 'Abba, Father!'" (Gal. 4:6)
Especially since New Year's Day falls on a Sunday this year, let us, like Mary, the Mother of God, who is also our mother, spend some time reflecting on these things in our hearts. In this light, we can begin to discern how to live as children of God in this new year, giving birth to Christ ourselves, making Him present in and for the world together.
Peace and joy to one and all on the first day of 2012!