Sunday, December 27, 2009

The Unsung Hero of Christmas

I'm in a sentimental, brooding kind of mood. It's probably a Christmas hang-over. Too much food, too much socializing, too much merriment gets to me. So I need to withdraw every now and again.

Tonight as I let myself wallow, I catch a glimpse of St. Joseph by the creche that sits on top of our hall table. I think about how he took it all --- knocking on doors for a room, preparing a quasi-crib for his firstborn, standing by his wife as shepherds, then noble men from the East come to visit, fleeing to Egypt to save his family --- when he simply could have walked away the minute he heard of the Blessed Mother's predicament. Clearly, God could not have chosen a better man to be the father of His Son.

I let myself think about it some more. If St. Joseph had not heeded the angel's message to marry his fiancee, she could have been stoned to death. Had he not acted promptly to flee to Egypt, Jesus would have been one of the innocent boys killed by Herod's men. Then where would we all be without Christmas and without a Saviour?

I look at St. Joseph once more, head bowed towards his wife and Child. I see him in a new light. He wants us to focus on The Blessed Mother and The Baby Jesus even as he obviously plays a big role in the whole Nativity Story. In his hand, he holds a staff, a symbol of protection and guidance. The Mother and Child are safe because of him. And as a consequence, we too have been saved.

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