A Family Feast to Remember

I am really excited and praise God for the gift of my beautiful family. Jesus said in the Gospel of St Matthew: “everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother (…) for my sake will receive a hundred times as much…” Mt 19:29. I have thousands of sisters and brothers around the world.

The Feast of the Holy Family is a very special day for me. It is the day when I have the opportunity to thank God that I am part of this big family and a sister of the Congregation of the Sisters of the Holy Family of Nazareth, with our beautiful charism – to extend the Kingdom of God’s love among ourselves and others by living the spirit of Jesus, Mary and Joseph whose lives were centred in the love of God and one another.

This morning I asked myself: “what does family mean for me?” My response was simple: unconditional love, belonging, understanding, forgiveness, openness, joy, support 24/7 and praying together.

This year, on Saturday December 28, we invited families, our Associates and friends, and youth to enjoy our Feast Day with us in Marayong. Here is what some of our participants had to say.

Together with around forty worshippers, we were fortunate to be able to attend the joyous celebrations on the feast of the Holy Family of Nazareth.

Mass was celebrated in the unique Polish War Memorial Chapel by Fr Joe Manjaly MS, with familiar Christmas carols led by the musically talented Sisters Christine, Rita and Sophie.

During the Mass we remembered family members past and present and prayed for those families who are suffering through persecution, violence and rejection.  We prayed for those families who are enduring the pain of the drought and bushfires. We remembered the joy of Jesus’ birth and the happiness and beauty that family members bring to our lives and asked the Holy Family to bless us always.

Adoration and prayers followed, and we were given the opportunity to reflect on and pray for the gift of our families. There was more beautiful singing by the Sisters and a photo opportunity.

The Sisters kindly invited us all back to their house where we escaped the 42-degree heat to enjoy a lovely supper, cake and coffee.  We sang happy birthday to baby Jesus and also remembered the significantly younger Sr Barbara who is celebrating an important milestone soon.  A highlight of the celebration was the games and dancing under the energetic direction of the sisters, who ensured that everyone joined in and where there was much laughter and joy.

Thank you, Sr Margaret and all the sisters, for your kindness and for opening your hearts to those in need. May the Holy Family shower you with blessings now and always.

I would like to say from the bottom of my heart “Thank you so much to everybody for coming, for praying together and supporting us in our daily life”.

We remembered and we will remember you and your families in our daily prayer to the Holy Family: “O Holy Family, bless and protect all the families of the world; safeguard their unity, fidelity, integrity and dignity. Enable them to live according to God’s law that they may fulfil their sublime vocation. May their lives be a reflection of yours and may they enjoy your presence forever in heaven. Amen”

PHOTOS COMING SOON: www.facebook.com/csfnaustralia

Contributors:

Sr Paula Volchek, CSFN.
Louise and Mark Boffa (parents of our Sr Sophie CSFN).

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