The first Sunday after Epiphany marks the Feast of the Holy Family, according to the traditional calendar. A most lovely feast, honoring the Holy Family, and especially significant for parishioners of Holy Family Catholic Church in Columbus, OH.
This morning we were most blessed to attend a Solemn High Mass, with celebrants Fr. Eric Flood (recently designated District Superior General for the FSSP), our dear seminarian and former Master of Ceremonies, Michael Connaughten and Fr. Kevin Lutz, Holy Family's very own pastor.
Fr. Flood's homily on the Holy Family was touching, instructive and illuminating. A few highlights (summarizations and not the complete text):
*We must remember that one of the best ways we can emulate our Lord, is to imitate the child Jesus, resting peacefully and confidently in the arms of His dear mother, Mary. As Mary lamented the "loss" of her child (when he was teaching in the Temple), so she mourns those of us who are "lost" to her. We must return to our Mother, just as Jesus did. Mary was "mommy" to Jesus...
*If we wish our children to be virtuous, we must manifest constantly all of those virtues which Mary possessed. We must eliminate distractions, seeking our joy and finding salvation in our vocation. Mary didn't "gad about". She lived a quiet and hidden life of virtue. Her home was her castle, and she was Queen. So must we, as mothers, be queen of our castle.
*Fathers must continually seek the intercession of St. Joseph to successfully live their vocation as parent and spouse. The desire to protect the weak is inborn...men wish to be heroic. They must be heroes within their own homes. If a father attends Mass weekly with his children, 80% of these children will remain practicing Catholics. If the children are taken to Church by the mother only, the numbers fall to 25%.
*The path to heaven is by way of the family.
Here is a slideshow of this lovely Mass: