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Catholic Daily Liturgical Guide 30.12.23

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Catholic Daily Liturgical Guide 30.12.23


1ST JOHN 2: 12 – 17

I am writing to you, little children, because your sins are forgiven for his sake. I am writing to you, fathers, because you know him who is from the beginning. I am writing to you, young men, because you have overcome the Evil One. I write to you, children, because you know the Father. I write to you, fathers, because you know him who is from the beginning. I write to you, young men, because you are strong, and the word of God abides in you, and you have overcome the Evil One. Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, love for the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the pride of life, is not of the Father but is of the world. And the world passes away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides forever.

The Word of the Lord.

Psalm 96: 7 – 8a, 8b – 9, 10 (R.) 11a

R/. Let the heavens rejoice and earth be glad.

Give the Lord, you families of peoples,
Give the Lord glory and power;
Give the Lord the glory of his name. R/.

Bring an offering and enter his courts;
worship the Lord in holy splendour.
O tremble before him, all the earth. R/.

Say to the nations, “The Lord is king.”
The world he made firm in its place;
He will judge the peoples in fairness. R/.


Alleluia. Alleluia.
A hallowed day has shone upon us; come, O nations, and adore the Lord; for today a great light has come down to earth.

“She spoke of him to all who were looking for the redemption of Jerusalem.”
LUKE 2: 36 – 40

At that time: There was a prophetess, Anna, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher; she was of a great age, having lived with her husband seven years from her virginity, and as a widow till she was eighty-four. She did not depart from the temple, worshipping with fasting and prayer night and day. And coming up at that very hour she gave thanks to God, and spoke of him to all who were looking for the redemption of Jerusalem. And when they had performed everything according to the law of the Lord, they returned into Galilee, to their own city, Nazareth. And the child grew and became strong, filled with wisdom; and the favour of God was upon him.

The Gospel of the Lord.

GOSPEL REFLECTION: A Unique and Sacred Calling

Saturday, December 30, 2023

There was a prophetess, Anna…She never left the temple, but worshiped night and day with fasting and prayer. And coming forward at that very time, she gave thanks to God and spoke about the child to all who were awaiting the redemption of Jerusalem. (Luke 2:36–38)

We all have a unique and sacred calling given to us from God. Each one of us is called to fulfill that calling with generosity and wholehearted commitment. As the famous prayer of Saint John Henry Newman puts it:

God has created me to do Him some definite service. He has committed some work to me which He has not committed to another. I have my mission. I may never know it in this life, but I shall be told it in the next. I am a link in a chain, a bond of connection between persons…

Anna, the prophetess, was given a very unique, one-of-a-kind mission. When she was young, she was married for seven years. Then after losing her husband, she remained a widow until she was eighty-four. During those decades of her life, the Scripture reveals that “She never left the temple, but worshiped night and day with fasting and prayer.” What an incredible calling from God!

Anna’s unique calling was to be a prophetess. She fulfilled this calling by allowing her whole life to be a symbol of the Christian vocation. Her life was spent in prayer, fasting and, most especially, in anticipation. God called her to wait, year after year, decade after decade, for the one and definitive moment of her life: her encounter with the Christ Child in the Temple.

Anna’s prophetic life tells us that we each must live our lives in such a way that our ultimate goal is to continually prepare for the moment when we meet our divine Lord in the Temple of Heaven. Unlike Anna, most are not called to literal fasting and prayer every day all day within the church buildings. But like Anna, we must all foster an interior life of ongoing prayer and penance, and we must direct all of our actions in life to the praise and glory of God and the salvation of our souls. Though the way this universal vocation is lived out will be unique to each and every person, Anna’s life is nonetheless a symbolic prophecy of every vocation.

Reflect, today, upon how well you imitate this holy woman in your own life. Do you foster an interior life of prayer and penance and daily seek to devote yourself to the glory of God and the salvation of your soul? Evaluate your life this day in light of the wonderful prophetic life of Anna that we are given to ponder.

Lord, I thank You for the powerful witness of the prophetess Anna. May her lifelong devotion to You, a life of continual prayer and sacrifice, be a model and inspiration for me and for all who follow You. I pray that You daily reveal to me the unique way in which I am called to live out my vocation to total dedication to You. Jesus, I trust in You.

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