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. Jan 2022 .
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Doctrines & Morals

Jesus, for He shall save us from our sins

Jer. 23:5-8, Mt. 1:18-24. God willed that His eternal Son would be the Saviour of the entire human race. Today's first reading alludes to a king who will “reign and govern wisely…doing what is just and right in the land.” In the language of Prophet Jeremiah, the “Righteous Branch" will be raised up from David’s descendants and that through Him His people will be saved and live in safety. Most people at that time believed that the Messiah would be a mighty king who would liberate the faithful from their oppressors. Thus, in today's Gospel, Jesus is described as the one who will save His people from their sins. To save us is why He came. In order to do so, although He was God from eternity, He chose to take on our humanity, fully and in the flesh, by being born of a mother. That was Mary’s major role and mission: to be the mother who served God’s saving plan. As Catechism of the Catholic Church puts it: “to become the mother of the Saviour, Mary was enriched by God with gifts appropriate to her role. The Angel Gabriel salutes her as “full of grace” — totally ready for her great mission in life.

When the Angel visited Joseph, the unspecified Angel said to Joseph, “Do not be afraid.” As God prepared Mary and Joseph for their role and mission, so we are also prepared for what is asked of us. This principle: that God prepares those whom He chooses for their role and mission, is true for everyone who is prepared to serve God. We are chosen and called to holiness. God has prepared us for works of service and of life; by giving us Jesus to be our Lord and guide, by calling us to the saving waters of Baptism, by giving us the support of the Church and its Sacraments and by strengthening us to cooperate with His saving will. Sometimes, we may be caught up in the dilemma of doing the right and loving thing. If we follow only the letter of the law, we may be doing the right thing but not the most loving and noble thing. However, if we focus every time on the most loving and noble thing, like Joseph, it will surely be the right thing. Though Joseph could have done the right thing and shamed Mary by publicly divorcing her, he decided to go beyond the letter of the law to do the loving thing, which in his case was also the right thing. God was doing something new, something extraordinary, in the life of Mary and of Joseph, indeed, in the life of the human race. The unprecedented nature of what God was doing led to understandable fear and anxiety in the lives of those most directly affected, Mary and Joseph.

May the Lord direct our path, so that we be reassured that in doing God’s will, we will be blessed beyond our wildest imagination! Amen!! Good morning and happy weekend!!!

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