The Holy Family conquered their struggles through their faith-life. This must be the primary concern of our families.
Today’s Gospel is acted out almost every Sunday here at St. Matthew. Mary and Joseph went to the temple holding Jesus. Simeon and Anna made a fuss. This happens here also. Just about every week one of our couples come in to the church holding their newborn child. There joy is indescribable. “Look who we have with us,” they say before they ever open their mouths. I make believe I’m surprised even though I may have seen the expectant Mom every week. I love seeing the babies, and I enjoy making a fuss. And I love seeing the huge change in the parents who present their first child. One young couple told me something that I know all of you realized when he came home from the hospital with that first child. They said, “You know, we can’t come and go and do the things we did before we had the baby, but we have so much more now. Life was great before, but much better now.”
I love seeing how much you love your children. I love the fact that you all are determined to provide the best for your children.
Let me remind you, to be the best parents you can be, remain grounded in the Lord. Make prayer a part of your home life. Pray with your children at bedtime and pray for them after they fall asleep. Teach your children respect. Let them witness your respect for them, for each other, and for others and demand that they respect others, including you.
Do your best, and trust God to do the rest.
May all our families be Holy Families ■
 Sunday 28th December, 2008, Holy Family. Readings: Genesis 15:1-6; 21:1-3. The Lord remembers his covenant for ever—Ps 104(105):1-6, 8-9. Hebrews 11:8, 11-12, 17-19. Luke 2:22-40 [Holy Innocents].
Konrad von Soest, Nativity (1403), Mixed media on wood, 73 x 56 cm, Parish church, Bad Wildungen.