Homily for the Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God
Theme: The new year
By: Fr. Benny Tuazon
Homily for Wednesday January 1 2020
(Lk. 2:16-21) Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God, January 1, 2020
In today’s Gospel, the Solemnity of Mary Mother of God, the shepherds found Jesus, the Messiah with His mother Mary and earthly father, Joseph. The Church placed this beautiful feast to usher in a new year because of its significance in our faith to Jesus, true God and true man. Yes, the feast is not really about Mary but about who Jesus is to us. Throughout the year, throughout our faith life, we must never forget that Jesus was born of a woman and embraced fully our humanity. And together with that belief is the recognition of Jesus, true God,sent by His Father to save us. Mary the Mother of God is an expression of faith that Mary was the mother of Jesus man and God.
Let me quote from catholic.com for a brief explanation of this solemnity:
“A woman is a man’s mother either if she carried him in her womb or if she was the woman contributing half of his genetic matter or both. Mary was the mother of Jesus in both of these senses; because she not only carried Jesus in her womb but also supplied all of the genetic matter for his human body, since it was through her—not Joseph—that Jesus “was descended from David according to the flesh” (Rom. 1:3). Since Mary is Jesus’ mother, it must be concluded that she is also the Mother of God: If Mary is the mother of Jesus, and if Jesus is God, then Mary is the Mother of God.”
Our faith is starting us right. We look forward to the coming year as a journey with Jesus the true man, thus giving us Himself as a model in earthly life. At the same time, Jesus, the Second Person of the Trinity, came to save us. Mary’s life was also an example of this divine truth. Her role as mother did not stop when she gave birth to Jesus. She reared them like any good faithful mother should. Not only that, while she being a mother to Jesus, she also was aware of her own discipleship. She was a good disciple, a good Christian. She knew that she did not only have a son but as saviour a God, as well.
Different cultures, faith, and communities have different ways of welcoming the new year. Catholics incorporate them in their own lives. Most are beset with paganism like; jumping at 12 midnight to gain more height, assembling a number of rounded fruits, lighting fireworks, blowing of horns and other sound producing actions, wearing clothes printed with rounded figures or money, having money in one’s pocket, etc. All of these are geared towards being assured of the graces we need in the coming year. There is nothing wrong with wishing for graces. But it is suspect if we rely only on the above rituals. We take chances but these things cannot be left to chances. If we cannot really do away with them, I suggest that we “Christify” them. We incorporate them in our faith and “convert” them to Christ. Rather than simply doing them and “bahala na” if they will come true or not, attach a prayer to God for their realization. At the proper time before or after midnight, gather your family in prayer and ask the Lord through those things and actions, to grant your requests. Example,
“Lord Jesus, before us are these rounded fruits which came from Your goodness. We thank you for the grace of giving us something to eat everyday. As we enter this new year, may our faith in you and your providence in us be like these rounded fruits, no ends, no beginnings.”
Year 2019 is about to end. Year 2020 is just around the corner. Years are just marks. They help us stop for a while and evaluate and reflect on the past and look forward to the future. In all of these, Jesus, true God and true man, the Son of Mary, is our focus.
“The Virgin Mary, being obedient to his word, received from an angel the glad tidings that she would bear God” (Against Heresies, 5:19:1 [A.D. 189]). IRENAEUS
A Prosperous and blessed new year 2020 to everyone!
Mary, Mother of God!
Pray for us.