Saturday, January 08, 2011

The Baptism of the Lord Year A–2011

Baptism of ChristMay the Peace of Christ reign in our Hearts,

For many years Jesus lived a normal life.
He learned a trade.
He loved and supported his Mom.

The scriptures tell us that in those 30 years before his baptism He grew in wisdom and understanding.

Slowly but surely, He grew to understand who he was and what he was called to do.

Then one day God moved in His heart and He presented Himself to John to be baptized,
from that moment his life was changed forever.
The years of preparation were over.
The quiet years of family life in Nazareth were gone.

Sometimes in the three years which followed Jesus would not even have time to see his mother and relatives. (Mt 12:46-50)

His task was urgent and all consuming.
There were souls to save.
The kingdom had to be proclaimed.
The sick had to cured,
the hungry fed.
and the cross carried.

By his life he taught us how to live, by his death he taught us how to love and freed us from our sins.

If you read Gospel carefully
Three things happened after Jesus was baptized

•    The heavens were ripped open and God and mankind were no longer separated.

•    Holy Spirit in the form of a dove gave Jesus the gifts he needed to complete the Father’s will.

•    After the baptism of Jesus scholars tell us that His unique relationship with God became crystal clear to Him and to others.

After His baptism Jesus understood His mission.
He knew that he was called to be the Suffering Servant that Isaiah spoke about in the first reading.

God made clear to Jesus not only that his mission to redeem the world,
but also that he would accomplish this task with suffering love.

This is my beloved Son in whom I am well pleased.
All of us in this Church have been baptized,
and with our baptism we became Sons and Daughters of God.

Our identity, indeed who we are, is rooted in our Baptism.
When we were baptized three things also happened to us.

•    The heavens were open and the sin of Adam was washed away.

•    With our baptism we are given the seven gifts Holy Spirit and at confirmation they are strengthened.
Fear of the Lord

( I was asked the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit on my Priesthood exam and I could only remember 6 lucky I was ordained !)

Finally with our baptism we became the sons and daughters of God.

We must never forget…
we are sons and daughters of God.

And the fact that we are all indeed Sons and Daughters of God means that we are in relationship with each other.

You are my brother and sister because we share the same father in heaven.

A few years ago one of my spiritual directors handed me a small stack of papers.

He told me to put little signs all over my room saying.

They said…
Don’t forget You are God’s Son !

When people came in my room they thought it was weird but those little signs were very effective in reminding me who I was and how I was called to live and love especially after a bad day.

Holy Ones today’s feast reminds us that.

•    God is close to us

•    We have everything we need to live good and holy and loving lives.

•    From our baptism we share a special relationship with God and each other.

No matter what comes our way.

May we never forget who we are and how we are called to live.



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