Solemnity of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of God

First Reading | Numbers 6:22-27

We all live under God’s blessing. Without His love that redeems and sustains us, we will cease to exist. The best way to live is with gratitude, accept God’s blessings, live them to the full, and place them at the service of the Church. This New Year, may we all seek God’s will and put it into practice daily.

22 The Lord said to Moses: 23 “Speak to Aaron and his sons and tell them: This is how you shall bless the Israelites. Say to them: 24 The Lord bless you and keep you! 25 The Lord let his face shine upon you, and be gracious to you! 26 The Lord look upon you kindly and give you peace! 27 So shall they invoke my name upon the Israelites, and I will bless them.”

Responsorial Psalm | Psalm 67:2-3, 5, 6, 8

R: May God bless us in his mercy.

May God have pity on us and bless us; may he let his face shine upon us. 3 So may your way be known upon earth; among all nations, your salvation. (R) May the nations be glad and exult because you rule the peoples in equity; the nations on the earth you guide. (R) May the peoples praise you, O God; may all the peoples praise you! 8  God bless us, and may all the ends of the earth fear him! (R)

Second Reading | Galatians 4:4-7

The incarnation of Jesus is one of the greatest gifts God has given to humanity. The combined divinity and humanity in Jesus is a fact, so humanity’s destiny in Him is assured. Whether or not we place our lives under the grace of salvation remains to be seen. This is the way to true life and happiness, far better than what the world can offer us.

4 Brothers and sisters: When the fullness of time had come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under the law, 5 to ransom those under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons. 6 As proof that you are sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying out, “Abba, Father!” 7 So you are no longer a slave but a son, and if a son then also an heir, through God.

Gospel | Luke 2:16-21

Reflection is an important aspect of a healthy life. No matter how busy we are, we must make time for silent reflection. Without this, we will lack the necessary direction for fulfillment. Look at Mama Mary—she knew she would understand her role in the mystery of salvation through reflection, so she pondered in her heart all that had happened. This year, let us reflect on our lives and discern God’s direction for us.

Gospel Acclamation

In the past, God spoke to our ancestors through the prophets; in these last days, he has spoken to us through the Son.

16 The shepherds went in haste to Bethlehem and found Mary and Joseph, and the infant lying in the manger. 17 When they saw this, they made known the message that had been told them about this child. 18 All who heard it were amazed by what had been told them by the shepherds. 19 And Mary kept all these things, reflecting on them in her heart. 20 Then  the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen, just as it had been told to them. 21 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.