FIRST READING
A reading from the Book of Isaiah (Isaiah 11: 1-10)
With righteousness he will judge the poor.

On that day: There shall come forth a shoot from the stump of Jesse, and a branch shall grow out of his roots. And the Spirit of the Lord shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and the fear of the Lord. And his delight shall be in the fear of the Lord. He shall not judge by what his eyes see, or decide by what his ears hear; but with righteousness he shall judge the poor, and decide with equity for the meek of the earth; and he shall strike the earth with the rod of his mouth, and with the breath of his lips he shall slay the wicked. Righteousness shall be the belt of his waist, and faithfulness the belt of his loins. The wolf shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid, and the calf and the lion and the fatling together, and a little child shall lead them. The cow and the bear shall feed; their young shall lie down together; and the lion shall eat straw like the ox. The sucking child shall play over the hole of the asp, and the weaned child shall put his hand on the adder’s den. They shall not hurt or destroy in all my holy mountain; for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord as the waters cover the sea. In that day the root of Jesse shall stand as an ensign to the peoples; him shall the nations seek, and his dwellings shall be glorious.
The word of the Lord.

RESPONSORIAL PSALM Psalm 72:1-2.7-8.12-13.17 (R. 7)
R/. In his days shall justice flourish, and great peace forever.

O God, give your judgement to the king,
To a king’s son your justice,
That he may judge your people in justice,
And your poor in right judgement. R/.

In his days shall justice flourish,
And great peace till the moon is no more.
He shall rule from sea to sea,
From the River to the bounds of the earth. R/.

R/. In his days shall justice flourish, and great peace forever.

For he shall save the needy when they cry,
The poor, and those who are helpless.
He will have pity on the weak and the needy,
And save the lives of the needy. R/.

May his name endure forever,
His name continue like the sun.
Every tribe shall be blest in him,
All nations shall call him blessed. R/.

SECOND READING
A reading from the Letter of Saint Paul to the Ephesians (Ephesians 2:13-22)
He is our peace, bring hostility to an end in his flesh.

Brethren: Now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near in the blood of Christ. For he is our peace, who has made us both one, and has broken down the dividing wall of hostility, by abolishing in his flesh the law of commandments and ordinances, that he might create in himself one new man in place of the two, so making peace, and might reconcile us both to God in one body through the cross, thereby bringing the hostility to an end. And he came and preached peace to you who were far off and peace to those who were near; for through him we both have access in one Spirit to the Father. You are no longer strangers and sojourners, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus himself being the cornerstone, in whom the whole structure is joined together and grows into a holy temple in the Lord; in whom you also are built into it for a dwelling place of God in the Spirit.
The word of the Lord.

ALLELUIA Cf. Luke 1:28
Alleluia. Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord; Let it be to me according to your word. Alleluia.

GOSPEL
A reading from the holy Gospel according to Matthew (Matthew 2: 13-15. 10-23)
Take the child and his mother, and flee to Egypt.”

When the Wise Men had departed, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream and said, “Rise, take the child and his mother, and flee to Egypt, and remain there till I tell you; for Herod is about to search for the child, to destroy him.” And he rose and took the child and his mother by night, and departed to Egypt, and remained there until the death of Herod. This was to fulfil what the Lord had spoken by the prophet, “Out of Egypt have I called my son.” But when Herod died, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared in a dream to Joseph in Egypt, saying, “Rise, take the child and his mother, and go to the land of Israel, for those who sought the child’s life are dead.” And he rose and took the child and his mother, and went to the land of Israel. But when he heard that Archelaus reigned over Judea in place of his father Herod, he was afraid to go there, and being warned in a dream he withdrew to the district of Galilee. And he went and dwelt in a city called Nazareth, that what was spoken by the prophets might be fulfilled, “He shall be called a Nazarene.”
The Gospel of the Lord.

Today’s Reflection
The consecration of our dear country to Mary, Queen and Patroness, means that all of us must come to her and learn from her school. The school of Mary teaches us how to submit as a nation to God’s will, his plan and purposes for our country. By Mary we are inspired to say always, “Be it done to me according to thy word.” Like Mary, we submit our wills to obey the laws and precepts of God. We submit our minds to assent with perfect submission and firm belief to revealed truth and to the doctrine of Christ. We also submit our hearts to spurn natural desires, love God above all things and cleave to God always. Mary, as our intercessor, will plead with us through her Son to bring about total healing of our country in the face of corruption, bad governance/ government policies and lawlessness in our country. Through Mary our Mother, we conquer.

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