Gospel: Lk 2:41-52
Every year, the parents of Jesus went to Jerusalem for the Feast of the Passover, as was customary. And when Jesus was twelve years old, he went up with them, according to the custom of this feast. After the festival was over, they returned, but the boy Jesus remained in Jerusalem; and his parents did not know it. They assumed that he was in their group of travelers and, after walking the whole day, they looked for him among their relatives and friends. As they did not find him, they went back to Jerusalem, searching for him; and on the third day, they found him in the temple, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking questions. And all the people were amazed at his understanding and his answers. His parents were very surprised when they saw him; and his mother said to him, ”Son, why have you done this to us? Your father and I were very worried while searching for you.” Then he said to them, ”Why were you looking for me? Did you not know that I must be in my Father‘s house?” But they did not understand this answer. Jesus went down with them, returning to Nazareth, and he continued to be obedient to them. As for his mother, she kept all these things in her heart. And Jesus increased in wisdom and age, and in divine and human favor.
Read: Hannah returns to God the child she had asked of God. Joseph and Mary are left wondering at the words of their young son who said, ”Don‘t you know I must be in my Father‘s house?” John, the evangelist, reminds us of our true identity: we are God‘s children and God is our inheritance.
Reflect: Hannah seems to understand the core belonging of her child much better than Joseph and Mary, who are left confused at Jesus‘ words. Hannah longed for a child with the intensity of the longing of a drowning person for air. But upon receiving the child, she is willing to return him to the very source of life: God. In this, she elevates her faith to a plane equal to that of Abraham. Joseph and Mary would also learn, incrementally and wholly, to give up their son to whom he truly belonged. If only every parent on earth learned this lesson of their child‘s true origins and destiny, how holy would our families be!
Pray: Today, pray for all the families in the world.
Act: Connect with your family members today – by phone, e-mail, or a personal visit.
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