THE SHEPHERDS MET THE SHEPHERD OF ALL THE SHEPHERDS!
“Mary kept all these things she had contemplated, and meditated on them in her heart.”
(Numbers 6:22-27; Psalm 67; Galatians 4:4-7; Luke 2:16-21)
The Gospel for this first day of the year of the Lord which is also the day of the Solemnity of Mary, the Mother of God, shows us the visitation of the shepherds to our Lord who is the Shepherd of all, but cared first by His parents. The story in the manger tells us that the God and Shepherd of all chose to be laid in a poor box-like container where the animals eat. This scene is referring indirectly to the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass we have. Our Lord sacrificed or compromised His Divinity in order to become a human for our salvation. These shepherds who visited the Lord are our witnesses to the acknowledgement of the truth that God came here on earth as a poor creature like any other babies but preferred to be laid in a poor box where animals eat. The shepherds are our examples in finding who God is and what God is in order for us to know and understood that God humbled Himself for us and we must know and understand this, for God preferred to be laid as a baby in a place where animals are fed, as if God is a food for the animals.
And as the shepherds preach the message that was preached by the angel they had seen who was with the heavenly host, all were amazed at their preaching. The shepherds testify that the poor baby is not an ordinary baby but Christ and God as what the angel said to them. The angel and the heavenly host praised God, saying, “Glory to God in the highest and on earth peace to His people who have God’s will.”
And Mary, the Mother of God, transforms in love on all the she had contemplated by meditating in her heart. This is what we must know about the Blessed Virgin Mary! She kept all of these things in her heart or she knows everything by heart yet she reflects on all of these things! This is a proof that Mama Mary is a humble Queen and Mother of God for she does not say to herself that, “Oh! I am the Mother of God! All ages will call me blessed! I know all these things already!” Mama Mary kept all these things in her heart and still reflecting on all of these things.
This great day invites us to imitate our Queen and Mother Mary in her contemplation in everything and on meditating on what she had contemplated. What Mama Mary contemplated by the senses, she bears all of these again by meditation. Mama Mary teaches us today how to pray!
In St. Paul’s letter to the Galatians, he tells us that God’s Son was born under the law of nature where His Son was born of a woman and did not came here on earth in an instant. And under the law of God which was cared by God’s people, God’s Son subjected Himself to the law like everybody else. Just so, all of us must be born of the Blessed Virgin Mary to become like Jesus Christ, who subjected Himself in the womb of Mary to become human. If we have Mary as our Mother, we will be born under the law just like His Son, Jesus Christ, for Mama Mary will care for us for we are vulnerable to danger of living against the law. For it is against the law of spiritual grace not to be born first of the Blessed Virgin Mary before becoming like Jesus Christ, who have the Holy Spirit that God sent into our hearts and cries out, “Abba Father!” For just as Jesus Christ subjected His spiritual nature as God and humanity to the Blessed Virgin Mary, so also must we who are humans only.
This first day of the year of the Lord is very perfectly matched with the Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God and the Gospel for today. This day invites us to imitate Mama Mary to be always reflective on everything especially for us humans who do not know all these things already. This day teaches us not to be arrogant for we do not know everything at all. It just shows that we must always be humble in everything by looking – again on all of these things. Our Queen and Mother Mary teach us here to be contemplative, meditative, humble, discerning, and to be prudent! Let’s go back again to January of last year up to now in order to see all these things if we followed God’s will, and will still ready us for this new year. Amen. Let us come to our Shepherd as an animal and let us preach on all of what we have witnessed as poor shepherds of the Shepherd!
Our Lord in this Gospel is not only a cared Shepherd cared by Joseph and Mary, He is also the Lamb of God laid in a manger. The shepherd’s who visited the Lamb of God were shown here doing their work at night watching their flock before the angel spoke to them. This scene refers indirectly to God as a Shepherd who watches His people day and night. These shepherds are our priests who care for us – we who are God’s flock. As they heard the word from the angel, they went in haste to where the Lamb of God is laid. And as these shepherds contemplated Him, they made known the words of the angel that they meditated on. Just so, it is the principal task of the priests to contemplate the Lamb of God before they go on their mission, glorifying and praising God.
“Jesus, I trust in You” “O Mary conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to thee”
Mary H. Distributist