Saturday of the Third Week of Advent, Dec. 17, 2016
(Genesis 49:2, 8-10, Psalm 72:1-4, 7-8, 17, Matthew 1:1-17)
Most of us have looked into our family genealogy, or subscribed to ancestor.com. According to that website, “in order to better understand ourselves, it is important to understand where we come from!”
From time immemorial, people have wanted to and needed to know their roots. Even today, it can have political as well as personal ramifications.
Today’s Scripture passages trace the human lineage of Jesus from Abraham to his birth. The Genesis account (Gen. 49:2, 8-10) focuses on Abraham’s grandson Jacob (Israel) whose twelve sons and their descendants became known as the twelve tribes of Israel. Matthew’s Gospel begins with the genealogy of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham, through three units of fourteen generations, including the names of some women! For Matthew’s listeners, it was important to establish Jesus’ credentials as the promised Davidic king.
This is Jesus’ “Family Tree," and by our baptism, it is ours as well. As branches on this tree we are nourished and sustained and know God’s purpose for each of us. With God as our Father and Mother, Jesus is our brother, and we are sisters and brothers to one another. It IS important to know to whom we belong!
“Know Jesus. Know God.
No Jesus. No God.”
Photo by Bill & Mary Kay Kessenich, Appleton, Wisconsin, of one of five crèches they set up for Christmas, including one they got from Bethlehem, which goes under the tree. "We really get into reminding ourselves of the reason for the season! Our custom for years has been to have our children (now grown) and now our grandchildren go in a procession on Christmas Eve through the house dressed as shepherds with the baby Jesus while we sing Silent Night and they place him in the manger."
Click here to go to USCCB Readings for today:
- Reading 1, Genesis 49:2, 8-10
- Responsorial Psalm and Alleluia, Psalm 72:1-2, 3-4AB, 7-8, 17
- Gospel, Matthew 1:1-17