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A Perfect Example: Listen and Ask

Feast of the Holy Family

December 26, 2021 •

Whenever we hear any readings - from Old Testament or New - on how to live a holy family life, it's always based, in essence, on Jesus, Mary, and Joseph. They are the perfect model.

There's really not a lot said in Scripture about them. But the few things that are said, if you take time to pray and meditate on them, are revealing.

Saint Paul, whenever he gives us a teaching on the proper relationships between husbands and wives; between fathers and mothers and children, it's always based on what he learned from the Holy Family.

This model he gives to us in our second reading is a very basic one which he repeats several times throughout his letters.

Wives, be subordinate to your husbands, as is proper in the Lord. Sub-ordinate. Under the ordination or authority of.

Husbands, love your wives. And avoid any bitterness toward them. Men, we need to be reminded of this, it can be a weakness of ours.

He says to children: Obey your parents in everything. Everything. Not some things. Every thing. For it is pleasing to the Lord.

Then one more recommendation for us fathers; do not provoke your children so they may not become discouraged.

This is probably the simplest expression that Paul has ever given for his recommendations for each relationship in every family.

This teaching is based upon the example we've received from the Holy Family itself. ... In this second reading, before Paul tells us how we should relate to and love one another, he gives us this advice:

Ans children of Christ, as disciples of the Lord, we are to "put on heartfelt compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. Bearing with one another and forgiving one another if you have any grievance" against them. Because the Lord has forgiven you.

If you can't love your family the way Christ loves you, then it really doesn't matter that you try to love others. Of course it's a good thing to strive for, but the real test of virtue and discipleship is how you behave at home.

If you can't truly love your husband, your wife, your children, your parents, then you're not loving yet.

Sir 3:2-6, 12-14; Ps 128:1-5; Col 3:12-21; Lk 2:41-52

Homily begins at 25:55

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