It is 22nd December 2016. The readings are from 1 Samuel 1:24-28; and the Gospel from Luke 1:46-56. The first reading describes the birth of Samuel. It is the Magnificat of the Old Testament. The song of Hannah brings out the kindness, mercy and greatness of God in doing things for the lowly and humble. God needs to be acknowledged in our social, political and personal lives because it is the Lord whohas given us everything as gifts. We need to learn praising God for all that God has done in our lives like that of Hannah and Mary. It is God who has generously and mercifully bestowed on us with the gift of life and the rest we enjoy thereby. The responsorial Verse praises, “My heart exults in the Lord my savior.” (1 Sam2:1). In the Gospel, we have the Magnificat from the New Testament. It is the hymn of praise by Mary for acknowledging the wondrous things the Lord has done for her. By recognizing and acknowledging we begin to grow closer to God gratefully. All that we have today is from God as gifts and therefore they need to be utilized not only for us but also for the welfare of others. Mary received the supreme gift of bearing God’s own son, yet she did not keep Him for herself. As we have a few days left for meeting our Saviour in the manger, let us be grateful to God for all that we have received. Ungratefulness and lack of appreciation will destroy our spiritual life gradually. May God bless you to generous and appreciate the goodness we have received. We have received enough so far to thank God. May you have a good day.