Your catechetical library for the liturgical year

Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God

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Lectionary: 18
Read the Gospel: Luke 2:16-21

Gospel Summary
After the shepherds receive the good news from the angel, they follow the sign to find the savior. They tell everyone they meet, including Joseph and Mary that this child is indeed special, the Son of God and Savior of the world. It is hard for people to understand what all this means; even Mary, still young in her faith journey, can't fully grasp all that the shepherds say. We are told, however, that she kept the words of the shepherds in her heart... words that she would reflect on throughout her life. Eight days later, Mary and Joseph take Jesus to the temple where he is named Jesus.

Reflection for Families
When we first held our children in our arms, we wondered so many things about them. Who will they become? What will they do with their lives? What will their growing up years yield? Like Mary, we "held these things in our hearts" and probably are still holding. But, what we can learn from Mary? She trusted, though not fully understanding. What thoughts would have gone through her mind knowing that the name "Jesus" meant "savior"? We don't know our own future or the future of our children. What we do know is that God loves us enough and wants us to share in the kingdom enough that he gave us his Son.

Bringing the Gospel into Your Family
Today would be a good day to remember the sacrament of Baptism and connect it to the ritual action of naming Jesus in the temple. Take some time after a meal or at the end of the day to talk about every family member's name, what their name means, why they were named as they were, who else in the family (or family history) shares the names, and family stories connected with the name. Share symbols, photographs, and memories from family baptisms.

Discussion Starters
1. Some of the thoughts I treasure in my heart are...
2. There is someone I would like to tell about Jesus. When I do, this is what I will say...
3. God has blessed me especially in this past year by...

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