This weekend the Church celebrates the end of the Christmas Season and the Beginning of Ordinary Time. In the two weeks since the Christmas many people have taken on the chore of dismantling the decorations and putting their gifts to good use or return them to the store for exchange. But the real question is what have we done to celebrate this New Life that has come to us in the form of an infant?
The Baptism of the Lord is not a celebration of His infancy, but a celebration of the commencement of His ministry. We are encouraged to reflect on how Jesus took on the mission of the Father's will so that we might live. How fortunate we are to have His love demonstrated in such a way. Even though we cannot possibly live up to His example, we are strengthened by His grace.
"We confess, then, our Lord Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God, perfect God and perfect man, of a rational soul and a body, begotten before all ages from the Father in his Godhead, the same in the last days, for us and for our salvation, born of Mary the Virgin according to his humanity, one and the same consubstantial with the Father in Godhead and consubstantial with us in humanity, for a union of two natures took place. Therefore we confess one Christ, one Son, one Lord. According to this understanding of the unconfused union, we confess the holy Virgin to be the Mother of God because God the Word took flesh and became man and from his very conception united to himself the temple he took from her" (Formula of Union, Council of Ephesus, A.D. 431).