Alexa

Jesus is our true light

Jesus is our true light

December 30, 2007 is the Feast of the Holy Family of Jesus, Mary and Joseph. January 1, 2008 is the Solemnity of the Blessed Virgin Mary, the Mother of God and the World Day of Prayer for Peace.
Gospel: When the magi had departed, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream and said, "Rise, take the child and his mother, flee to Egypt, and stay there until I tell you. Herod is going to search for the child to destroy him." Joseph rose and took the child and his mother by night and departed for Egypt. He stayed there until the death of Herod, that what the Lord had said through the prophet might be fulfilled, Out of Egypt I called my son.
When Herod had died, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared in a dream to Joseph in Egypt and said, "Rise, take the child and his mother and go to the land of Israel, for those who sought the child's life are dead." He rose, took the child and his mother, and went to the land of Israel. But when he heard that Archelaus was ruling over Judea in place of his father Herod, he was afraid to go back there. And because he had been warned in a dream, he departed for the region of Galilee. He went and dwelt in a town called Nazareth, so that what had been spoken through the prophets might be fulfilled, He shall be called a Nazorean. (Matthew 2:13-15, 19-23).
Migrants, immigrants, refugees and other people on the move could easily relate to our Gospel today. Joseph, Mary and Jesus fled to Egypt to keep the family safe. The Exodus of the Holy Family is an experience that is shared by many people today, and for the same reasons - they want to keep their families safe and financially secure. Migrants put their lives at risk for the sake of their loved ones. They provide cheap labor to developed countries. I hope and pray that one day, families are not torn apart by migration, violence and poverty. I pray that they will find great economic opportunities in their homeland.
The Church confesses that Mary is truly "Mother of God" (Theotokos), meaning "God bearer." Mary is called in the Gospels "the mother of Jesus" and is acclaimed by Elizabeth, at the prompting of the Spirit and even before the birth of her son, as "the mother of my Lord" (Luke 1:39-45). The ecumenical Council of Ephesus in A.D. 431 affirmed the long-standing tradition of Christian prayer in which Mary was honored as Mother of God in his human nature, the mother of "God made man." The Council of Chalcedon in A.D. 451 declared that Jesus exists in two natures, the divine and the human, without division or separation to form one undivided person of Jesus Christ, the Son of God incarnate.
January 1 is the World Day of Peace. The Hebrew word for peace is "shalom." The word has a much broader meaning than simply absence of conflict; it means wholeness, fulfillment, and well-being. The peace of which Luke's gospel speaks is more than the absence of war or conflict; it also includes security and well-being - characteristics of peace or "shalom" in the Bible (Luke 7:50; 8:48; 10:5-6).
I hope that all of us can find peace in our hearts by following the example of Mary; reflecting on the events in our lives with a contemplative heart, and to have that unceasing faith that through Jesus' name all of us are saved and forgiven.
Christmas is a reminder to all of us that God sent his Son to gather the nation into God's reign and to find those who are oppressed, rejected, sick, lowly, lost, and in darkness. God's gift to humanity is Jesus - "the light that shines in the darkness and the darkness has not overcome it" (John 1:5).
New Year means new resolutions. Alfred Delf said that in order to experience real joy, "We must re-order our lives. And we do it now and do not try to put it off. We must make a complete surrender of ourselves, not in sudden rush of emotion, which is likely to be as transitory as it is violent, but wholly and continually, until placing ourselves in God's hands has become habitual and permanent. Only the person capable of seeing ultimate truth and being saved by it can experience real joy."
In the name of Jesus, Prince of Peace, we can overcome the darkness in our lives and find the strength to forgive, the power to love and love more, and the Peace - "Shalom" - that is the longing of the human heart.
The American poet Robert Browning said, "Grow old along with me. The best is yet to be, the last of life, for which the first was made: Our times are in His hand who said, "A whole I planned, youth shows but half; trust God: see all, nor be afraid." We bid goodbye to 2007. We are also saying goodbye to our KABAYAN readers. We are grateful to Marie Feliciano for her dedication to the cause of migrants in Taiwan. We will miss her. God bless you Marie. "Grow old with me. The best is yet to be..."
The season of Christmas and New Year is the season of hope. "Do not be afraid" (Luke 2:10-11) the angel said, announcing the birth of Jesus. Do not be afraid to hope that better things are to come. Do not be afraid to embark on new beginnings. Do not be afraid to let go, forgive and love again. Henry Cardinal Neuman said, "to grow is to change and to change often."
I wish each one of you the best of health and happiness that life can give. Let us welcome 2008 full of hope and trust that all will be well.
May the LORD bless you and keep you! May the LORD let His face shine upon you, and be gracious to you! May the LORD look upon you kindly and give you peace! (Numbers 6:22-27).
May you and your family have a healthy, happy and grace-filled New Year! God bless us all! I love you.
Announcements
We will be holding a New Year's Day celebration in Tantzu. Our New Year's Eve and Day Mass will be held on Monday, December 31, starting from 8 a.m and 8 p.m. On Tuesday, January 1, we will be celebrating the Holy Eucharist at 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. The UGNAYAN Migrant Center is located at No. 390 Chungshan Road, Section 2, Tantzu.
We, the migrant workers in Tantzu, are inviting you to welcome the New Year on Monday, December 31. An outdoor concert and disco will be held from 8 p.m. to 12 midnight at the T.E.P.Z. Girls Dorm Sports Center. The concert is dubbed "Simply the Best for Migrants." We will be featuring live bands, dancing, contests and a lot more! We hope that through our New Year's Eve celebration, we could help our fellow migrants have a meaningful New Year in Taiwan.
Tune in to AM864 every Sunday from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. for a radio program brought to you by the UGNAYAN Migrant Ministry. The program includes Sunday readings and reflections, news and information about migrants, music, dedication, prayer requests, counseling and discussions. Requests, comments, suggestions, dedications and letters are welcome. Call or text 0930-44-6060. Send your letter and story to UGNAYAN Migrant Ministry Radio, No. 390 Chungshan Road, Section 2, Tantzu 427.
The UGNAYAN Migrant Ministry reaches out to all migrants and new immigrants in Taiwan. The UGNAYAN Center, located in Tantzu, Taichung County, serves as a center for the following ministries: UGNAYAN Music and Liturgy Ministry, UGNAYAN Charismatic Community, Singles For Christ, Couples For Christ and Handmaids of the Lord, El Shaddai, and the UGNAYAN Family.
You may contact Father Joy by sending him a text message at 0930-44-6060, e-mailing him at joyalito@yahoo.com, or writing him at Jilin Road, Lane 14, No. 3, Taipei 104. You may text your New Year's prayer request to 0930-44-660 or mail it to: Prayer Partners, UGNAYAN Migrant Ministry, No. 390, Chungshan Road, Sec. 2, Tantzu 427.


Updated : 2021-02-25 22:37 GMT+08:00