Today is Christmas, and we have to agree with the writers of Franciscan Media, who say, “On this day, the church focuses especially on the newborn Child, God become human, who embodies for us all the hope and peace we seek. We need no other special saint today to lead us to Christ in the manger, although his mother Mary and Joseph, caring for his foster-son, help round out the scene.”
Jesus’ birth is announced by angels. His first visitors are common shepherds, symbolic of His position as the Shepherd of our souls. It also speaks to the fact that not just the Wise Men (or kings), who will arrive later, are worthy of salvation. Jesus will spend his adult life mapping a path for us all. How does he arrive at that point?
Let us therefore contemplate the love and guidance Mary and Joseph provided for Jesus. Let us remember the forgotten people of the community in which Christ grew and flourished.
We remember His prodigious mind at 12 years old when Mary and Joseph found him in the temple, conversing with the rabbis – “Then, after three days they found Him in the temple, sitting in the midst of the teachers, both listening to them and asking them questions. And all who heard Him were amazed at His understanding and His answers.” (Luke 2: 46-48)
Jesus had synthesized all he had been taught by his holy mother and father, but probably the knowledge he gained from his own teachers in the community and temple.
Jesus was born one with God but chose to live the human experience. Drawing from his divine nature and living the human condition, Jesus, through His teaching, parables and actions puts things in perspective for us. He sacrificed his human existence but laid out a path forward for us that we can comprehend. Through love, honor, and good works we can aspire to heavenly reward.
Adapted with material from: Nativity of the Lord | Franciscan Media. (n.d.). Franciscan Media. Retrieved Dec. 16, 2020, from https://www.franciscanmedia.org/saint-of-the-day/nativity-of-the-lord and Luke 2:41-52 – Jesus In The Temple At Twelve Years Old. (n.d.). Knowing Jesus. Retrieved Dec. 16, 2020, from https://bible.knowing-jesus.com/readings/Jesus-In-The-Temple-At-Twelve-Years-Old