26 Dec 2015

27th December 2015 - Feast of the Holy Family - Medugorje

Given it is Christmastide this weeks programme is a pre-recorded programme where John explores the story of the controversial pilgrimage site which is Medjugorje in Bosnia-Herzegovina during a visit to the shrine during 2015. We have a recording of the story of the apparitions as well as the personal story of Emily Aldridge who was a Welsh pilgrim.

You can listen to the podcast of this weeks programme HERE.

Exploring the story of Medjugorje
 

In the second part of the programme we have an account of the story of Medjugorje which was recorded during a visit to the shrine in 2015.

Some other reading about Medjugorje:
 
Why Medjugorje matters - Crux
The Medjugorje web - is the very first web site created in 1995 about Medjugorje, and is still the largest, most comprehensive, and visited Medjugorje web site on the internet.
CNA - CDF reportedly judges Medjugorje apparitions false, but permits pilgrimage
NCR- Vatican Remains Mum on Medjugorje: No Decision Has Been Made
 
In the third part of the programme, John has an interview with Emily Aldridge about her experience in Medjugorje. 


John and Emily

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

The Feast of the Holy Family - Gospel (Luke 2:41-52)
 
 
The Sunday which falls within the Octave of Christmas (i.e. between 25th December and 1st January) is set aside as the Feast of the Holy Family and this year displaces the feast day of St John the Evangelist.
"Scripture tells us practically nothing about the first years and the boyhood of the Child Jesus. All we know are the facts of the sojourn in Egypt, the return to Nazareth, and the incidents that occurred when the twelve-year-old boy accompanied his parents to Jerusalem. In her liturgy the Church hurries over this period of Christ's life with equal brevity. 
 
The general breakdown of the family, however, at the end of the past century and at the beginning of our own, prompted the popes, especially the far-sighted Leo XIII, to promote the observance of this feast with the hope that it might instil into Christian families something of the faithful love and the devoted attachment that characterize the family of Nazareth. The primary purpose of the Church in instituting and promoting this feast is to present the Holy Family as the model and exemplar of all Christian families" - CatholicCulture.org



"Think about it. The creator of the universe spent most of his human life as a craftsman, working with dad in the family business and ultimately taking it over. Mary, the holiest of all creatures, spent most of her time changing diapers, cooking, and cleaning. The secret to holiness is not to do extraordinary things, but to do ordinary things with extraordinary love and gratitude...."
Continue reading this reflection here.
 
"Nazareth is a kind of school where we may begin to discover what Christ’s life was like and even to understand his Gospel . . . How I would like to return to my childhood and attend the simple yet profound school that is Nazareth! How wonderful to be close to Mary, learning again the lesson of the true meaning of life, learning again God’s truth. . . May Nazareth serve as a model of what the family should be. May it show us the family’s holy and enduring character and exemplify its basic function in society: a community of love and sharing, beautiful for the problems it poses and the rewards it brings, in sum, the perfect setting for rearing children – and for this there is no substitute." from an address given by Blessed Paul VI in Nazareth, January 5 1964
 
Now every year his parents went to Jerusalem for the festival of the Passover. And when he was twelve years old, they went up as usual for the festival. When the festival was ended and they started to return, the boy Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem, but his parents did not know it.  
Assuming that he was in the group of travellers, they went a day’s journey. Then they started to look for him among their relatives and friends. When they did not find him, they returned to Jerusalem to search for him. After three days they found him in the temple, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions. And all who heard him were amazed at his understanding and his answers.  
When his parents saw him they were astonished; and his mother said to him, “Child, why have you treated us like this? Look, your father and I have been searching for you in great anxiety.” He said to them, “Why were you searching for me? Did you not know that I must be in my Father’s house?” But they did not understand what he said to them.  
Then he went down with them and came to Nazareth, and was obedient to them. His mother treasured all these things in her heart. And Jesus increased in wisdom and in years, and in divine and human favour.
 
Reflections on this weeks gospel:
 
Sunday Reflections
English Dominicans
Centre for Liturgy, St Louis University
ACP Reflections on the Holy Family
 
Liturgical odds & ends
 
Liturgy of the Hours: Psalter week 1, Octave of Christmas
 
Saints of the Week
 
December 28th - The Holy Innocents (martyrs)
December 29th - St Thomas á Becket
December 30th - St Egwin
December 31st - St Sylvester
January 1st - Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God. Also World Day of Peace
January 2nd - Ss Basil the Great and Gregory Nazianzen
January 3rd - For the diocese of Limerick - St Munchin - patron of the diocese. As the feast day of the principal patron of the diocese falls on a Sunday it is celebrated/ranked as a Solemnity in the diocese of Limerick.
January 3rd - For every where else - 2nd Sunday of Christmas

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