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The flight to Egypt

Gospel Reading: Mt 2:13-15, 19-23

When [the magi] 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. He stayed there until the death of Herod, that what the Lord had said through the prophet might be fulfilled, “Out of Egypt I called my son.”

When Herod had died, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared in a dream to Joseph in Egypt and said, “Rise, take the child and his mother and go to the land of Israel, for those who sought the child’s life are dead.” He rose, took the child and his mother, and went to the land of Israel. But when he heard that Archelaus was ruling over Judea in place of his father Herod, he was afraid to go back there. And because he had been warned in a dream, he departed for the region of Galilee. He went and dwelt in a town called Nazareth, so that what had been spoken through the prophets might be fulfilled, “He shall be called a Nazorean.”


Herod is going to search for the child to destroy him. The Gospel for this year’s feast of the Holy Family touches very much the situation of modern families. First, the Child is endangered. How many children are endangered today, starting from their conception in the womb of their mothers? Millions of children worldwide never see the light of day because they are deliberately killed in the womb of their own mothers, sometimes by the persons who should most love them and care for them: the parents, the doctors and nurses.

And for those who are born, many face a life of poverty and misery, lacking the necessities for healthy growth and sufficient education. Many end up being street children or beggars, and some are sold into prostitution or are hired as child laborers.

The Holy Family have to migrate to Egypt because of the threat from Herod. Many families today are forced to migrate to seek livelihood elsewhere because they no longer have any hope of making a decent living in our own country.

The Holy Family survive the threats to the life of the Child and the difficulties of working and living in a foreign land, because God is with them. Our families have reason to hope (“May bukas pa”) because God continues to watch over families in their difficulties and dangers.

Let us pray for our children and our families. Let us do our part to make every child welcomed and cared for, and to lift up the material and spiritual living conditions of every family.

Holy Family of Jesus, Mary, and Joseph, take care of our families!

SOURCE: “366 Days with the Lord 2012,” ST. PAULS Philippines, 7708 St. Paul Rd., SAV, Makati City (Phils.,); Tel.: 895-9701; Fax 895-7328; E-mail: books@stpauls.ph; Website: http://www.stpauls.ph.