Gospel reading: Mt 2:13-18
When the magi had departed, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream and said, “Rise, take the child and his mother, flee to Egypt, and stay there until I tell you. Herod is going to search for the child to destroy him.” Joseph rose and took the child and his mother by night and departed for Egypt. He stayed there until the death of Herod, that what the Lord had said through the prophet might be fulfilled, Out of Egypt I called my son.
When Herod realized that he had been deceived by the magi, he became furious. He ordered the massacre of all the boys in Bethlehem and its vicinity two years old and under, in accordance with the time he had ascertained from the magi.
Then was fulfilled what had been said through Jeremiah the prophet: A voice was heard in Ramah, sobbing and loud lamentation; Rachel weeping for her children, and she would not be consoled, since they were no more.
HEROD IS GOING TO SEARCH FOR THE CHILD TO DESTROY HIM
Jesus comes to bring peace, but many do not accept him. Some, like King Herod, see him as a threat to their power.
We celebrate the “witness” or sacrifice made by the “holy innocents” whose massacre King Herod ordered out of his anger and insecurity, in his attempt to kill the infant Jesus whom the Magi called “the newborn king of the Jews” (Mt 2:2).
Powerful people in this world show their might often by means of the sword instead of using their power for service.
But the more they use violence to solicit obedience, the more they betray their inherent weakness and powerlessness.
Human powers are destined to fall; only God is the all-powerful.
May the sacrifice of the Holy Innocents remind those who kill the innocent, and the unborn, that God alone is the author of life and that God will deal with them most severely in time.
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SOURCE: “365 Days with the Lord,” ST PAULS, 7708 St. Paul Rd., SAV, Makati City (Phils.); Tel.: 895-9701; Fax 895-7328; E-mail: [email protected]; Website: http://www.stpauls.ph.