Many times, I tend to disobey my parents, especially when their requests are trivial or not that important based on my assessment. As I grow in knowledge and education, the more I see their flaws and imperfections. Oftentimes, I give bits of advice to my mother to help her free herself from superstitious beliefs, fallacies, and false ideas that have been implanted in her since childhood.
The Gospel for today shows the obedience of Jesus to His parents. He, who is the Second Person of the Trinity and must know “everything” submitted himself first to the authority of His parents. Jesus came to do the will of the Father. At first, Mary and Joseph did not understand why Jesus remained in the temple and caused them worry. However, Jesus showed that He was not just truly divine but truly human as well. As fully man, He also went through the process of maturation and development. The Source of growth and wisdom, would not defy growing in stature and wisdom. Though he had full awareness of His identity, Jesus lived fully his humanity.
As a seminarian, there is a tendency for me to be excited about doing public ministry. However, the Gospel is reminding me to be patient. Jesus did not start a public ministry immediately. He first learned to obey and submit to the family he was gifted and entrusted to. He built relationships with His neighbors and friends and grew in them before beginning his public ministry. Such an act was a great example of synodality.
Today’s Gospel challenges me to imitate the Lord’s example to always reach out and encounter people at various levels. I must accompany them on their journey and be patient even with their lack of understanding of the Gospel or indifference in their relationship with God. As a priest-in-process, I am also challenged to show my parents, little by little, that I am here to do the Father’s will and that I am not destined to remain with them forever.
By: Sem. Jose A. Cordova Jr.
Each year, Jesus’ parents went to Jerusalem for the feast of Passover, and when he was twelve years old, they went up according to festival custom. After they had completed its days, as they were returning, the boy Jesus remained behind in Jerusalem, but his parents did not know it. Thinking that he was in the caravan, they journeyed for a day and looked for him among their relatives and acquaintances, but not finding him, they returned to Jerusalem to look for him.
After three days they found him in the temple, sitting in the midst of the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions. And all who heard him were astounded at his understanding and his answers. When his parents saw him, they were astonished, and his mother said to him, “Son, why have you done this to us? Your father and I have been looking for you with great anxiety.” And he said to them, “Why were you looking for me? Did you not know that I must be in my Father’s house?” But they did not understand what he said to them.
He went down with them and came to Nazareth, and was obedient to them; and his mother kept all these things in her heart. And Jesus advanced in wisdom and age and favor before God and man.