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Jesus and His family

Gospel Reading: Lk 8:19-21
The mother of Jesus and His brothers came to Him but were unable to join him because of the crowd. He was told, “Your mother and your brothers are standing outside and they wish to see you.” He said to them in reply, “My mother and my brothers are those who hear the word of God and act on it.”

My Mother and my Brothers
Luke, who presents a revered picture of Mary in his infancy narratives, pictures Jesus’ family in a much better light than Mark, his source of material on this episode. He omits Mark’s passage where Jesus’ relatives set out to seize him, believing he is “out of his mind” (Mk 3:21). Neither does Luke mention the incident when upon being told that his mother, brothers, and sisters are standing outside asking for him, Jesus looks around at those seated in the circle and says, “Here are my mother and my brothers” (Mk 3:34).

While not omitting this episode that suggests that Jesus is misunderstood by his family circle, Luke does not present Mary as sharing the same attitude. For Luke, Mary is blessed because of the fruit of her womb (cf 1:42). She is doubly blessed because she measures up to the demand of the Gospel beatitude: to hear the word of God and act on it.

Jesus teaches that relationship with him and with the Father consists not so much of descent from common ancestry as of acceptance of God’s will. Of this last, Mary, Jesus’ mother, is presented as model.

Think of the time when you showed that your love of God took precedence over your love of family. Or vice versa.

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SOURCE: “365 Days with the Lord 2016,” ST. PAULS Philippines, 7708 St. Paul Rd., SAV, Makati City (Phils.); Tel.: 895-9701; Fax 895-7328; E-mail: books@stpauls.ph; Website: http://www.stpauls.ph.