Monday, January 9, 2023

Feast of the Baptism of the Lord

The Month of January Dedicated to the Holy Name of Jesus

In other years: Saint Adrian of Canterbury (d. 710); Saint Andrew Corsini (c.1315-1374)

Readings of the Day

Rule of Saint Benedict: Ch 1:6-13 The Kinds of Monks

Mass: Is 42:1-4, 6-7 or Acts 10:30-34; Resp Ps 29; Mt 3:13-17

The voice of the Lord is majestic.



I have grasped you by the hand.
(Is 42:6)

Welcome to Monday and the Feast of the Baptism of the Lord, a Feast Italians and others in the world celebrated yesterday. Pope Francis, carrying on a tradition established in 1981 by Pope Saint John Paul II, baptized 13 babies yesterday morning in the Sistine Chapel. The babies won't remember the occasion, but their parents and godparents will. They will certainly relate the details to the precious children of God so that they can spread the good news throughout the generations. The Holy Father put it this way: "Teach your children the date of their baptism, it's like a birthday, because with Baptism we are re-born into Christian life." Furthermore, "Today is a feast. The feast of the beginning of a beautiful Christian journey in which you will help your children to go forward. Thank you for your decision to bring them to be baptized!" Do you know the date of your Baptism? Do you know who your godparents are? If you are godparents, are you praying for your godchildren? Have you in other ways too helped them grow in the faith? And we pray especially today for those mothers and fathers who, for one reason or another, are not making the decision to take their children to be baptized. I was baptized 20 days after I was born, November 29, 1964. Thank you, beloved mom and dad, and my godmother and godfather too. With three of them powerful intercessors in heaven, I still have my godmother praying for me on earth. And I have the privilege of having three goddaughters, two of whom are nieces, and the other is the oldest daughter of my best friend of nearly 40 years. Give to the Lord glory and praise. 

We go forth then, united in faith and prayer and celebrate our own baptism. At the same time, we listen to Saint Gregory Nazianzen (329-390).

Today let us do honor to Christ's baptism and celebrate this feast in holiness. Be cleansed entirely and continue to be cleansed. Nothing gives such pleasure to God as the conversion and salvation of men, for whom His every word and every revelation exist. He wants you to become a living force for all humanity, lights shining in the world. You are to be radiant lights as you stand beside Christ, the great light, bathed in the glory of Him who is the light of heaven. You are to enjoy more and more the pure and dazzling light of the Trinity, as now you have received - though not in its fullness - a ray of its splendor, proceeding from the one God, in Christ Jesus our Lord, to whom be glory and power for ever and ever. Amen.
(From a sermon by Saint Gregory Nazianzen, in Office of Readings, The Baptism of the Lord)

This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased.
(Mt 3:17)


Today's photo: From a faithful reader in Willits, CA. In His temple all say, "Glory!"
© Gertrude Feick 2023

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