Today we celebrate the Holy Family of Jesus, Mary and Joseph: We thank God, the Father of our human family. His Son, knew like us, the slow pathway of growth. Jesus needed a family to grow to maturity. The Christian community is our wider family. It reminds us that we have a common Father, and that we are brothers and sisters in Christ. We cannot reach maturity in isolation from others. The traditional African proverb states that , “It takes a village to raise a child” Another African proverb states “One knee does not bring up a child” We live in a fast-paced, instant information, and pressure-packed world. Today’s children are faced with a myriad of both challenges and opportunities. Isolation and loneliness are increasingly the hallmarks of our society - not just for the elderly, but for many younger people as well. Social distancing, shielding, quarantining because of Covid 19 has its consequences! Half a century ago, if a young mother had a baby who wouldn't sleep, if a newly-married couple had the row of a century, or a child needed advice with a school project, there would most likely have been a grandparent, an uncle, an aunt or a cousin just down the road who would be able to give much-needed reassurance, advice and support. But today many are parenting without family or even friends nearby, and we are the poorer for it. The old song puts it well “people who need people are the luckiest people in the world”
In the readings today Hannah offers the child that she longed for to the Lord in the Temple (1 Samuel 1:20-22, 24-28). Hannah felt overlooked by the Lord because she was without child. Hannah is typical of the oppressed women of Israel. The Lord heard her prayer and granted her request. The child’s name was Samuel, who became one of the great prophets of Israel. The author of today’s second reading (1 John 3:1-2, 21-24) declares that a Christian is a child of God. This is amazing news, but he goes on to tell us that we have seen nothing yet, because in the world to come we will resemble God. “we shall be like him because we shall see him as he really is” (1 John 3:2). When we pray the fifth mystery of the Joyful Mysteries of the Rosary we think of the finding of the boy Jesus in the temple. This story is told today in the Gospel of Luke (Luke 2:41-52). Jesus is aware of who his Father is. His answer to his parents can be paraphrased “Where would you expect a child to be but in his father’s house?” The Gospel however ends with Jesus going home to Nazareth with his parents and being obedient to them.
Today we know how important our children are. Today’s feast is a reminder to all to create an environment in our society where the child can grow with a strong sense of identity in their own self-worth, and learn to hold and practise values that will last them a lifetime. May 2022 be a blessed year for you and all your families. Fr. Charles C.P.
If children live with criticism
they learn to condemn
If they live with hostility
they learn to fight
If they live with ridicule
they learn to be shy
If they live with shame
they learn to feel guilty
If they live with tolerance
they learn to be patient
If they live with encouragement
they learn to have confidence
If they live with praise
they learn to appreciate
If they live with fairness
they learn what justice is
If they live with security
they learn what faith is
If they live with approval
they learn to like themselves
If they live with acceptance and friendship
they learn to find love and God in the world.
Thank you for your continued generosity to The Graan. We sincerely want to thank you for your outstanding contribution to the community at the Christmas Liturgical celebrations. Your support gives us great encouragement in our effort to preach the Gospel.
Post-Christmas Arrangements: Today (Sunday) Masses at 10.30am, 12noon & 4pm.. Mon 27th, Tues 28th, Wed 29th , Thurs 30th & Fri New Year’s Eve Mass will be at 11am. New Year’s Day (Saturday) - Mass @ 11am and Vigil at 6.30pm for Sunday 2nd January 2022 Masses – 10.30am, 12noon & 4pm.
Happy New Year: We wish each and every one of you a happy and blessed New Year from all of us at The Graan Monastery. May 2022 bring you many blessings.
Please visit our Crib here at The Graan. Donations given to our local St Vincent de Paul.
LESSONS IN HOPE - Aisling Centre Virtual Day of Inspiration Saturday 8th January with an inspiring programme of speakers and a guest performance by Actor, Adrian Dunbar. Event Free (donations optional) – Registration via Eventbrite https://bit.ly/3Bayruk.
Brian Mc Cann, Coa
Fr John Kearns SPS, Corcaghan, Co Monaghan
Pauline Dunbar, Chanterhill Rd, Enniskillen,
Karl Burns, Drumclay Rd, Enniskillen
Joe Mc Ternan, Belcoo
James Maguire & The Maguire Family, Cavancarragh, Lisbellaw
Ewan Watson, Monea
Clare Ryan, Sligo
John James Keown, Roscor, Belleek
Patricia Keown, Roscor, Belleek
Elizabeth Balatoni, Leeds
Elizabeth O’Kane, O’Kane Pk, Omagh
Frank & Nigel Corrigan, Hillview, Enniskillen
Hugh, Agnes & Kathleen Mc Manus, Enniskillen
The Devlin Family, Loughmuck, Omagh