Gospel – December 29, 2019 – Matthew 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.
On this day of farewell to my dad this Gospel reminds me of the great protection I’ve experienced through my life. Maybe he wasn’t getting messages from angels like Joseph but he was the protector – quietly watching – of his own family.
On Holy Family Sunday we say farewell to our Joseph – the one to lead us, to guide us and the provider for so long.
He was always that safe place we could come to when the chaos of this world became too much.
We’re going to miss him but that is our sacrifice – we give him now to God and may he celebrate with all those gone before.
At least that’s what I heard Him say…