It is a blustery and very, very, very (I hope my college English Professor isn’t reading this) cold Saturday. It is Sooo cold that the polar bears at the St. Louis Zoo want inside! I hope everyone had a great New Years celebration. My wife had to work both days (she’s a nurse), so the boys and I ‘bach-ed’ it, surviving on appetizers and Imo’s Pizza.
Quote or Joke of the Day:
Who travels for love finds a thousand miles not longer than one. (Japanese Proverb.)
And having been warned in a dream not to return to Herod, they departed for their country by another way. When they 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. (NAB Mt 2:12-14)
The magi and Joseph were both warned in dreams. Angels, the messengers of God, came in the dreams of many throughout the Scriptures. I wonder if the reception of a message from God, coming in a dream, is because while we sleep our minds are OPEN to receiving God’s word. I believe we put up a wall to this communication while awake. We don’t want to let anything get in our way, while we navigate our daily wants and obligations.
Moses, Mary, and Abraham were totally open to God even while awake. They had no walls to communication; and matter of fact, they all wanted to communicate with God, and to follow “all” of God’s commands without hesitation. God came to them without any having to navigate any obstructions. I pray that I can become this open to His word as readily as these great people of the bible.
The other topic of these verses was the flight to Egypt. Moses could be related to the child Jesus with the similarities in this flight. Jesus was in danger from a ruler, and needed to leave in order to live. Jesus had His own Exodus, in a sense. Moses Exodus was to take people of “Israel” to a promised land, and out of danger; and Jesus’ exodus was to take the “promised” to a different land, and out of danger, and thus saving all people, including the people of Israel.
Egypt was a traditional place of refuge for those fleeing from danger in Palestine (see 1 Kings 11:40; Jeremiah 26:21), but the main reason the child is to be taken to Egypt is that he may relive the Exodus experience of Israel. I wonder how difficult it was for a newborn infant, and a new, teenage mother to travel to a far away place like Egypt? This was a foreign land, with different customs and traditions. Even the foods may have been significantly different. Hebrew and Greek were spoken throughout the Roman Empire, but was Joseph and Mary’s everyday language and dialect spoken? How did they support themselves?
Pax et Bonum
Dan Halley, SFO
Secular Franciscan Order (SFO) Rule #2:
The Secular Franciscan Order holds a special place in this family circle. It is an organic union of all Catholic fraternities scattered throughout the world and open to every group of the faithful. In these fraternities the brothers and sisters, led by the Spirit, strive for perfect charity in their own secular state. By their profession they pledge themselves to live the gospel in the manner of Saint Francis by means of this rule approved by the Church.