Our Lady Queen of Heaven
Catholic Church, Harwich, Essex

Nativity of Our Lord 25 December, Holy Family 26 December, Second Sunday after the Nativity 2 January

The Nativity of Our Lord   Day Mass John 1:1-18

The readings considered here are those of the Mass during the day. John refers to him as ‘the Word’, for God has finally spoken his fullest word to the human race and as ‘the Light’, for he brings truth and direction in our darkness.  We are invited to renew our faith and welcome the Word of light into our lives again.

Do I appreciate that the birth of Christ is God’s loving invitation to change my life?

Do I welcome the Word of life and light into the dark corners of my life?

We pray that the feast of Christmas will bring many to reconsider the Christian message.

Let us open our hearts to the grace and truth of God.

The Feast of the Holy Family   Luke 2:41-52

Today’s gospel brings us a rare glimpse of the ‘hidden life’ of Jesus, the years spent under the care of Mary and Joseph. We encounter the mystery of the Son of God who has become man. He is fully human and subject to his parents, but from his earliest years Jesus is involved in his Father’s affairs. Luke stresses the anxiety of Mary, foreshadowing the three days of anguish when Jesus dies

What does this story of Jesus’ adolescence really teach us?

How is Luke preparing us for later events in the gospel story?

Let us pray with patience with ourselves and with others as we seek to grow in wisdom.

Let us pray for all our young people that they will be open to doing god’s will.

The Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God   Luke 2:16-21

One week after Christmas Day, we are asked to focus on the role and on the behaviour of Mary, the mother of the Messiah. The coming into a human life of the Son of God could only happen with the collaboration of Mary. Her response was a courageous and generous ‘yes’. Her yes is a turning point in history for it enables the Son of God to become a human being.  Her ‘yes’ is an example to all those who, like Mary, endeavour to do the will of God by following Jesus.

Do I appreciate the courage and love of Mary and see her as an example?

Do I imitate Mary’s silence and her pondering of God’s goodness in her heart?

We pray that we may follow the example of Mary, the first servant of Jesus Christ, who listened to God’s word and responded with generosity.

We open our hearts to God at the beginning f a new year, that God may bless us and keep us day by day.

Second Sunday after Christmas   John 1:1-18

This Sunday offers us the opportunity to reflect quietly with the help of the Scripture readings on the deeper meaning of the coming of Christ. ‘The Word was made flesh and lived among us’.  Many will reject the Word, but those who accept him become children of God. We have all received from the fulness of the Word and in Ephesians we bless God who has chosen us in Christ to be adopted sons and daughter.

How can we ever fathom the marvellous love of God who humbles himself to share in our humanity?

Do I appreciate or simply forget that I am an adopted child of God?

We pray that the feast of Christmas will shed light on our darkness.

Let us open our hearts to the grace and truth which comes to us in Christ.


Fr. Adrian Graffy