DAILY MASS READINGS (January 19, 2020)

FEAST OF THE HOLY CHILD JESUS [SANTO NINO] (CYCLE A, White)

Reading 1 (ISAIAH 9:1-6)

A reading from the Book of the Prophet Isaiah

The people who walked in darkness
have seen a great light;
upon those who dwelt in the land of gloom
a light has shone.
You have brought them abundant joy
and great rejoicing,
as they rejoice before you as at the harvest,
as people make merry when dividing spoils.
For the yoke that burdened them,
the pole on their shoulder,
and the rod of their taskmaster
you have smashed, as on the day of Midian.
For every boot that tramped in battle,
every cloak rolled in blood,
will be burned as fuel for flames.
For a child is born to us, a son is given us;
upon his shoulder dominion rests.
They name him Wonder-Counselor, God-Hero,
Father-Forever, Prince of Peace.
His dominion is vast
and forever peaceful,
from David’s throne, and over his kingdom,
which he confirms and sustains
by judgment and justice,
both now and forever.
The zeal of the LORD of hosts will do this!

– The word of the Lord.

Responsorial Psalm (PSALM 98:1, 2-3, 3-4, 5-6)

R.(3c) All the ends of the earth have seen the saving power of God.
or:
R.(cf. Psalm 97:1) The Lord is king; let the many isles be glad.
Sing to the LORD a new song,
for he has done wondrous deeds;
his right hand has won victory for him,
his holy arm.
R. All the ends of the earth have seen the saving power of God.
or:
R. The Lord is king; let the many isles be glad.
The LORD has made his salvation known:
in the sight of the nations he has revealed his justice.
He has remembered his kindness and his faithfulness
toward the house of Israel.
R. All the ends of the earth have seen the saving power of God.
or:
R. The Lord is king; let the many isles be glad.
All the ends of the earth have seen
the salvation by our God.
Sing joyfully to the LORD, all you lands;
break into song; sing praise.
R. All the ends of the earth have seen the saving power of God.
or:
R. The Lord is king; let the many isles be glad.
Sing praise to the LORD with the harp,
with the harp and melodious song.
With trumpets and the sound of the horn
sing joyfully before the King, the LORD.
R. All the ends of the earth have seen the saving power of God.
or:
R. The Lord is king; let the many isles be glad.

Reading 2 (EPHESIANS 1:3-6, 15-18)

A reading from the Letter of St. Paul to the Ephesians

Brothers and sisters:
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
who has blessed us in Christ
with every spiritual blessing in the heavens,
as he chose us in him, before the foundation of the world,
to be holy and without blemish before him. 
In love he destined us for adoption to himself through Jesus Christ,
in accord with the favor of his will,
for the praise of the glory of his grace
that he granted us in the beloved.

Therefore, I, too, hearing of your faith in the Lord Jesus
and of your love for all the holy ones,
I do not cease giving thanks for you,
remembering you in my prayers,
that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory,
may give you a spirit of wisdom and revelation
resulting in knowledge of him.
May the eyes of your hearts be enlightened,
that you may know what is the hope that belongs to his call,
what are the riches of glory
in his inheritance among the holy ones.

– The word of the Lord.

Alleluia (JOHN 1:14A, 12A)

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
The Word of God became flesh and dwelt among us.
To those who accepted him
he gave power to become the children of God.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel (MATTHEW 18:1-5, 10)

A reading from the Holy Gospel according to Matthew

The disciples approached Jesus and said,
“Who is the greatest in the Kingdom of heaven?”
He called a child over, placed it in their midst, and said,
“Amen, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children,
you will not enter the Kingdom of heaven.
Whoever humbles himself like this child
is the greatest in the Kingdom of heaven.
And whoever receives one child such as this in my name receives me.

“See that you do not despise one of these little ones,
for I say to you that their angels in heaven
always look upon the face of my heavenly Father.”

– The Gospel of the Lord.

Reflection: The 3rd Sunday of January has been granted to us by the Holy See to celebrate the Feast of the Santo Nino. This Feast is like a post Christmas celebration because it honors the Incarnation of Jesus who though divine in nature, humbled himself into our human nature and became like a little Child, subjected to the care of Saint Joseph and the Virgin Mary. Isaiah’s prophecy proclaims to us that the Child Jesus who is born Prince of Peace is the eternal light that shines in the darkness of our lives. The devotion itself reveals our identity as Catholics, meaning “Katholos” or “universal”. Saint Paul in his letter to the Ephesians tells us that because of Jesus, we have merited adoption as God’s beloved children, predestined to live a holy and devout life of faithfulness and service to him and others. As we celebrate the 500th Anniversary of the faith in 2021, we recall that event when Ferdinand Magellan accidentally landed ashore on the Philippines, and he gave an image of the Santo Nino to Rajah Humabon and Reyna Humamai of Cebu (baptized later on as Carlos and Juana). This oldest image in our country is presently enshrined at the Basilica Minore del Santo Nino, and nowadays there are replicas of it and devotions in different areas like Cebu, Aklan, Ilo-ilo, Pandacan, Tondo, and even in Greenbelt Makati. The Santo Nino also invites us to dispose ourselves in the virtue of humility. Jesus allows the children to come to him because they are such of God’s Kingdom. Children that have been considered as insignificant by old society has been regarded by Christ as great in the Kingdom of Heaven. Such statement reminds us to have a childlike value in accepting God’s reign in our lives. We are called to be humble and obedience in conforming to the world’s norms and regulations and most of all to the holy will of God. During his youth, Christ was lost in the Temple, and three days his parents sought for him until they found him with the doctors and scholars of the Law who are dumbfounded at his wisdom. Jesus explained to them his presence in the Temple as an honor to the dwelling place of God the Father. And then he subjected himself under the authority of the Virgin Mary and St. Joseph, advancing in wisdom and the favor of the Most High God. Let us imitate Jesus who humbled himself to be in solidarity with the world and most of all submitted himself to the loving plan of the Father in order to redeem us and make us worthy to be adopted children. Therefore these things can help us nurture our devotion to Senyor Santo Nino.

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