NEW YEAR'S EVE:
Friday, December 31, 2010
Regular Mass Schedule
Confessions: 11:00 AM – 1:00 PM & 3:30 – 5:00 PM
(Exposition and Evening Prayer as usual)
SOLEMNITY OF MARY, THE MOTHER OF GOD
Saturday, January 1, 2010
There will be no confessions, Exposition, Evening Prayer or Benediction
January 1, New Year's Day, celebrates newness. Exactly eight days after Christmas, traditionally it celebrates Mary as the mother of God. The Greek word for Mary's motherhood is "Theotokos" meaning "God-bearer." Becoming official church teaching at the Council of Ephesus in 381, this is one of the most ancient and important titles given to Mary. Chapter VIII of the Vatican II document, Lumen Gentium, which addresses Mary's role in Christian life, refers to her by that title no less than 12 times.
Eight days after the birth of a Jewish male, circumcision was demanded by Jewish law. January 1 also commemorates the circumcision of Jesus. The Gospel reading for the day from Luke recounts the shepherds' visit, the completion of the eight days leading to circumcision, and naming the baby Jesus, according to the angel's direction previous to his conception.
Beginning in 1967, Pope Paul VI requested that this day be set aside as a day of prayer for world peace. For 40 years popes have issued a message encouraging prayer as well as action toward the establishment of world peace.
If we used today to be as loving to others as mothers are to their children, this might be the year that peace becomes a reality. That reality may move us all to renew our commitment to God symbolized by Jesus' circumcision. So maybe these various celebrations do link together. Happy New Year!
-(c) 2006 Liturgical Publications Inc.
Prayer for the New Year
in this time of new beginnings,
we recall how the heavens celebrated the birth of Christ.
We think back to the new kingdom he proclaimed,
and remember the new life we gained in our baptism.
In this time of new beginnings,
and at the beginning of this New Year,
may we always act as good examples
of the new life in you that all Christians have
and be the same for others.
Give us the joy that is ours
as adopted members of God's family. Amen.