Monday, December 31, 2007



JANUARY 1, 2008

NUMBERS 6:22-27
The LORD said to Moses: "Speak to Aaron and his sons and tell them:
This is how you shall bless the Israelites. Say to them: The LORD
bless you and keep you! The LORD let his face shine upon you, and be
gracious to you! The LORD look upon you kindly and give you peace! So
shall they invoke my name upon the Israelites, and I will bless them."

Brothers and sisters: When the fullness of time had come, God sent
his Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to ransom those under
the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons. As proof that you
are sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying
out, "Abba, Father!" So you are no longer a slave but a son, and if a
son then also an heir, through God.

LUKE 2:16-21
The shepherds went in haste to Bethlehem and found Mary and Joseph,
and the infant lying in the manger. When they saw this, they made
known the message that had been told them about this child. All who
heard it were amazed by what had been told them by the shepherds. And
Mary kept all these things, reflecting on them in her heart. Then the
shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had
heard and seen, just as it had been told to them. When eight days
were completed for his circumcision, he was named Jesus, the name
given him by the angel before he was conceived in the womb.

Mary is both mother and virgin. From the beginning, she is a woman of
mystery, someone who knows pain and sorrow. Through her willingness,
her "yes", she bears a child who comes to give creation all he has,
only to be rejected by a world that refuses to accept him. Mary gives
birth to Jesus whose whole mission is to deliver from the law those
who were subjected to it, so that we might receive our status as
adopted sons and daughters.

Mary could have said: "No, not this time" and opted out of suffering
and pain. Instead, Mary chose God's way and trusted. Her
individuality is made credible through her choices. She is not
an "either or" person but one who embraces both.

Mary lives the reality of being both handmaid and Queen, virgin and
mother. She supports us in our quiet presence as well as our active
leadership. Mary understands what it means to be emptied out and to
be filled. She knows the pain of watching her beloved son suffer and
the joy of hearing him praised.

Today, let us reflect on the gif t of time. We recall the events of
the previous year and express thanksgiving for the good things that
have happened, and perhaps also recall the sad and painful events
that we have experienced. Most of all, let us celebrate the promise
of a new year and allow ourselves to be hopeful in spite of threats
of war, recession and the many challenges that we will face.

We pray ...
... for a deep and profound respect for life, especially for the
... for the strength, healing and speedy recovery of:
- Damaso Guevara and Eligia Fernando
- Herminia Guiden
... for the personal intentions of:
- Jason Balibay
- Pauline
... In Thanksgiving for blessing received: Josheil Dapo

Finally, we pray for one another, for those who have asked our
prayers and for those who need our prayers the most.

Have a good day!

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