FIRST BLOOD

“When the eighth day arrived for His circumcision, the name Jesus was given the child.” –Luke 2:21

Mass Readings: January 1
First: Numbers 6:22-27; Resp: Psalm 67:2-3,5-6,8; Second: Galatians 4:4-7; Gospel: Luke 2:16-21

On the eighth day of Christmas, we celebrate the feast of Mary, the Mother of God. On the eighth day of His life, Jesus shed His blood for the first time as He endured circumcision. Mary, His mother, would have been the one who nursed Jesus’ wound, repeatedly washing off His blood during the next few days as the infant Jesus healed.

This foreshadows Mary standing at the foot of Jesus’ cross decades later as He would shed His blood for our salvation. Many of you have seen the statue of the Pieta in which Mother Mary holds the dead, bloody body of her Son Jesus. Even after He died, Mary treasured Jesus’ body by cleaning off His blood. During her entire life, Mary was devoted to the Precious Blood of Jesus. This was dramatically portrayed in the movie The Passion of the Christ and in the book by Anne Catherine Emmerich, The Dolorous Passion of Our Lord Jesus Christ.

Imitate Mother Mary. Devote yourself to the Precious Blood of Jesus in 2017. Receive the eucharistic Jesus in Mass as often as possible, even daily. Commit yourself to frequent Eucharistic adoration. “O, the blood of Jesus. It must not suffer loss.”

PRAYER: Father, “let [Jesus’] blood be on us and on our children” (Mt 27:25).

PROMISE: “You are no longer a slave but a son! And the fact that you are a son makes you an heir, by God’s design.” –Gal 4:7

PRAISE: Praise You, risen Lord Jesus, for making all things new (Rv 21:5). Be praised and glorified in this new year.

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