|Mary, Majors Basilica at Christmas|
It is so fitting that the Church will celebrate this glorious feast as the New Year begins. Eight days after the feast of the birth of Christ, we remember Mary by celebrating her divine Motherhood. Mary is known as Theotokus, meaning the God-bearer. By honoring Mary, as Mother of God, we are also honoring Our Lord who choose to become flesh of the Virgin's womb.
Christmas honors Jesus as the "Prince of Peace," the Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God honors Mary as the "Queen of Peace. This feast celebrated on January 1st, is also designated the World Day of Peace. The theme chosen by Pope Benedict XVI is Educating Young People in Justice and Peace.
The Holy Father has asked all parents and teachers to be more attentive to the hopes and fears of young people and to their search for true values. He asked governments to put more resources into education and job creation.
The Pope went on to call all young people to take their schooling seriously and to be open to the example and knowledge their elders have to share. He said "be patient and persevering in seeking justice and peace, in cultivating the taste for what is just and true, even when it involves sacrifice and swimming against the tide."
Happy New Year to all and a blessed feast of the Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God!