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Association of the Miraculous Medal
Gospel Reflection for January 1

Besides her great privilege of being the Mother of God, Mary was also her Son’s first disciple. She is often called the Model, or Exemplar of the Church. Following her example, we walk with her through the Gospels as we reflect on her response to God in her life.

January 1, 2017 —The Solemnity of the Epiphany of the Lord

Matthew 2:1-12
 Father Oscar Lukefahr, C.M.

Catherine was preparing for a Christmas family gathering, giving out orders like a drill sergeant, “Pick up your things.  Don’t get your clothes dirty. Put away those toys.” Her four-year-old daughter had been underfoot, so Catherine sent her to the next room to play with the Nativity set.  As Catherine put dishes on the table she overheard her daughter’s make-believe conversation in a drill-sergeant voice that sounded like her own: “I don’t care who you are. Get those camels out of my living room.”

Christmas can be like that. We get so busy with decorations and gifts and preparations for parties that we miss the real meaning of Christmas. We literally chase Christmas out of the house. Then, instead of enjoying the joy and peace of Christmas, we feel a need to move on to other things.  Malls have cleaned out the camels and everything else connected with Christmas.  Fortunately, we don’t chase the camels out of the church. They, and the magi who rode them, are on a journey to Jesus.

For the magi, following the star and discovering the newborn king of the Jews was the most important thing in their lives.  Finally, “they saw the child with Mary his mother.” We too must make it our life’s goal to see Jesus. The magi found him in Bethlehem (which means “City of Bread”); we find him in the Eucharist. They were led to him by a star and by Scripture; so too are we. They saw him with Mary his mother; at Bethlehem and at Calvary, so too do we.

The magi offered gifts: gold for Christ as King, incense for Jesus as true God, myrrh for his burial as true man and Savior. At Mass we worship Jesus as God, acknowledge his true humanity, and are offered salvation through his death and Resurrection.

So don't get the camels out of the living room just yet!  They tell us that life is a journey to Jesus.

Read last week's reflection.