By Christina Hermoso
Roman Catholics commemorate on Friday, January 3, the Feast of the Most Holy Name of Jesus, which closely follows the celebration of the birth of our Savior Jesus Christ, in honor of the name “Jesus,” which means “God saves.”
Adoration of the Shepherds by Gerard van Honthorst, 1622.
( Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons/ MANILA BULLETIN)
In celebration of the feast, the Roman Catholic Church, which dedicates the month of January to the Holy Name of Jesus, encourages the faithful to offer novena prayers, to visit the Adoration Chapel, and to recite the Litany of the Most Holy Name of Jesus.
Church leaders said the Feast of the Most Holy Name of Jesus serves as “a reminder of the countless blessings that we continue to receive from the Holy Redeemer every day of our lives.”
“We should invoke the name of Jesus with confidence and always keep in mind His promise, ‘If you ask the Father anything in my name, He will give it to you,’ (John 16:23).”
Celebrated since the 15th century, devotion to the Most Holy Name of Jesus was deeply rooted in the Sacred Scriptures, specifically in the Acts of the Apostles. Saints Bernard, Bernardine of Siena, and John Capistrano, as well as the Franciscan Order, helped to a great extent spread devotion to His Holy Name.
Pope Innocent XIII extended the feast to the Universal Church in 1721.