“The Gift of His Name”
Matthew 1: 25: “And [Joseph] kept [Mary] a virgin until she gave birth to a son; and he called His Name Jesus.” What does this have to do with New Year’s Day? Nothing—in the Church, the new year began a month ago. While the Church has never celebrated New Year’s, it does, as a part of the twelve days of Christmas, celebrate the Holy Name of Jesus, which was given on His eighth day of life. Today’s readings, along with Philippians 2: 8-11 and John 16: 24, give us an idea of just how important this part of the Christmas message really is.