January 2022 - Overview for the Month
The Holy Father's Intentions for the Month of January 2022
For true human fraternity: We pray for all those suffering from religious discrimination and persecution; may their own rights and dignity be recognized, which originate from being brothers and sisters in the human family. (See also Apostleship of Prayer)
Feasts for January1. Solemnity of Mary, the Holy Mother of God, Octave Day of the Nativity, Solemnity
2. Basil the Great; Gregory Nazianzen, Memorial
3. Epiphany of the Lord, Solemnity
4. Elizabeth Ann Seton (USA and CAN), Memorial
5. John Neumann, Memorial
6. Andre Bessette, Opt. Mem.
7. Raymond of Penafort, Opt. Mem.
10. Baptism of the Lord, Feast
13. Hilary; Kentigern (Scotland), Opt. Mem.
17. Second Sunday in Ordinary Time, Sunday
20. Fabian; Sebastian, Opt. Mem.
21. Agnes, Memorial
22. Day of Prayer for Unborn, Opt. Mem.
23. Vincent of Saragossa, Opt. Mem.
24. Third Sunday in Ordinary Time, Sunday of the Word of God, Sunday
25. Feast of Conversion of St. Paul the Apostle, Feast
26. Timothy and Titus, Memorial
27. Angela Merici, Opt. Mem.
28. Thomas Aquinas, Memorial
31. Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Sunday
Focus of the Liturgy
The Gospels for the Sundays in January are taken from St. Matthew, St. Luke and St. John are from Year C, Cycle 2 of the readings.
January 2 - Epiphany of the Lord
This Gospel is about the Wise Kings visit to the Christ Child.
January 9 - Baptism of the Lord
This Gospel is about Jesus' baptism by John in the Jordan.
January 16th - 2nd Sunday in Ordinary Time
This Gospel is about the wedding feast at Cana.
January 23rd - 3rd Sunday in Ordinary Time
Jesus speaks in the synagogue in Nazareth.
January 30th - 4th Sunday in Ordinary Time
In this Gospel Jesus says, "no prophet is accepted in his own native place."
Highlights of the Month
In the first part of January we continue to rejoice and celebrate Christ's coming at Bethlehem and in our hearts. We have the wonderful feasts of Mary, Mother of God, where we honor Mary's highest title, and then we follow the Magi to the crib as they bring their gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh on Epiphany. Finally we reach the culmination of this season with the Baptism of Our Lord by St. John the Baptist. With a touch of sadness we take down our decorations and enter into the liturgical period known as Ordinary Time where we will devote ourselves to the mystery of Christ in its entirety.
This is a time of growth and an opportunity to allow the dignity of Sunday to shine forth prolonging the joy of Easter and Pentecost. Besides those previously mentioned the month's major feasts include: Mary Mother of God (January 1), Holy Name of Jesus (January 3), St. Elizabeth Ann Seton (January 4), St. John Neumann (January 5), St. Andre Bessette (January 6), St. Raymond of Penafort (January 7), St. Anthony, abbot (January 17), Sts. Fabian and Sebastian (January 20), St. Agnes (January 21), St. Francis de Sales (January 24), the Conversion of St. Paul (January 25), Sts. Timothy and Titus (January 26), St. Angela Merici (January 27), St. Thomas Aquinas (January 28) and St. John Bosco (January 31).
The feast St. Vincent of Saragossa (January 23), is superseded by the Sunday liturgy. The feast of St. Basil the Great and St. Gregory Nazianzen (January 2) is superseded by the Feast of the Epiphany.
The Winter Seasons
The opening days of January may be cold and nature bleak, but the domestic church still glows warm with the peace and joy of Christmas. We dedicate the New Year to Mary on the January 1st Solemnity honoring her as Mother of God; and on January 7, the Solemnity of Epiphany, we rejoice with her, as her Son is adored by the three Wise Men.
Herald John, who ushered in the Advent season, is present once again to close Christmastide on the feast of the Baptism of Our Lord (The First Luminous Mystery), and to open the Season of Ordinary Time. He points to Jesus, the Lamb of God who unites time and eternity in the Eucharistic Sacrifice, and even January’s diminishing darkness seems to echo St. John’s prayer: “He must increase and I must decrease.”
In this liturgical season the Church eagerly follows Our Lord as he gathers his apostles and announces his mission. At Cana’s wedding feast (The Second Luminous Mystery) he performs his first public miracle at the request of his Mother, and his disciples saw his glory and believed in him.
We, his present-day disciples pray for a like faith as we contemplate the eternal wedding feast of the Lamb and the unique role of the Blessed Mother in the plan of salvation. May we wholeheartedly obey her words of counsel: “Do whatever he tells you.”
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