Tomorrow we celebrate new beginnings and the promise of a new year. It is fitting on the first day of January that we also celebrate the feast of the Solemnity of Mary, commemorating the role Mary plays in the mystery of our salvation. The Second Vatican Council stated: “Clearly from earliest times the Blessed Virgin is honoured under the title of Mother of God.” While St. Pope Paul VI said:
“On this day we exalt the singular dignity which this mystery brings to the holy Mother… through whom we were found worthy… to receive the Author of life.”
The icon of Our Mother of Perpetual Help (see below) invites us into this mystery as Mary offers the Child Jesus to us who stand before her in prayer. Through the icon of Our Mother of Perpetual Help, Mary presents Jesus to you and me, the Word incarnate for our salvation, just as she showed her first-born son to the shepherds and Magi.
Mary knew God was at work in her. She knew she needed time each day to reflect, understanding how to walk with Him in her daily life.
Like the Shepherds, we must be eager to find Jesus in the many experiences of our day-to-day living. Let’s take time today and tomorrow to reflect on the Christmas mystery and pray for the gift of spiritual insight so we can see the many faces of Christ around us.
Let our prayer echo Pope Francis on this solemnity:
“Help us to say our own ‘yes’ to the urgent call, as pressing as ever, to proclaim the good news of Jesus.”
In Mary, always our Perpetual Help.
Happy New Year.
Frs. Wilfred, Graham, Hyginus, Jayson and David.