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Sunday Reflection - Jan 1st, 2023

As we enter a New Year, it is an excellent time to reflect on how our lives have been moved by our Lord Jesus Christ.

Have we welcomed God into our lives?

Have we taken time to speak with God each day?

Have we put God first?

With the hustle and bustle of our everyday lives, it can be hard to make time for God, but we can look to others for inspiration. What steps can we take to improve our relationship with God throughout the year? It is almost serendipitous that we celebrate the first true disciple of Jesus right when the new year begins.

Today we honor the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of our Lord Jesus Christ. She is the first true follower of Jesus Christ. The one who said “Yes” to God when the angel came to her that fateful day. She, of true faith and love, gave her life to God the Father and the Son. What devotion she must have had to take on such a challenge. We cannot all be as devout as Mary, but maybe we can learn from her perseverance and faithfulness.

If we could give but one moment each day to God, compared to what Mary gave her entire life, we may be able to grow our relationship with our Lord and King. Not only did Mary say “Yes” to bring Jesus into this world, but she also raised Jesus. She experienced all the challenges of motherhood and suffered the loss of a child, the ultimate fear of every mother. Even through all these trials, Mary still stayed true to God and dedicated her life to her faith.

What if, instead of just one moment of prayer each day, we took our dedication to our faith even further? Praying at home alone and with our family is a perfect way to start our journey, but bringing Christ to your community is even better.

Volunteering at church or for local charities is such a vital part of our faith. We are called, as disciples of God, to bring Christ to others. Spending time volunteering in your community can be quite a challenge when we live such busy lives, but when you compare it to the discipleship of Mary, it doesn’t seem so difficult.

Many of us make New Year’s resolutions after the clock strikes midnight. Perhaps this year, your resolution could be for your faith. Let us take a new step forward, as an entire parish, to put God first in our lives and in the lives of those we love. If that is something you have already successfully done, then go one step further and give the gift of Christ to your community.

Let us say “Yes” to God, just as Mary did so long ago.

- Katie Baker


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