The Society of Jesus celebrates today its Titular Feast honoring the giving of the Name Jesus to the Child Jesus. St. Ignatius always wanted to “name” his least Society under the most holy Name: St. Ignatius wanted each Jesuit to be an “extension” of the person of Jesus since he bears his name and is a companion of Jesus.
Honoring the holy Name and propagating the devotion to the Most Holy Name of Jesus are not unique with the Jesuits: Franciscan St. Bernardine of Siena (1380 – 1444) propagated devotion to the holy Name Jesus.
Various spiritual writers have mentioned that the most powerful protection against the Evil One is the holy Name of Jesus.
It is perhaps quite unfortunate for us Filipinos that we hastily mention the name of Jesus or of the holy Family beginning with Jesus’ name when disaster occurs or something untoward and unexpected happens. We so easily mention or call on the name Jesus unnecessarily and irreverently.
Today’s Solemnity in the Jesuit calendar reminds us of God’s great gift to us of the Name Jesus: “… at the Name of Jesus all knees should bend in heaven, on earth and among the dead, and all tongues proclaim that Christ Jesus is the Lord to the glory of God the Father.” (Phil 2: 10- 11)
As we celebrate the Solemnity of the holy Name, let us pray that we rediscover a deeper sense of awe and devotion to the holy Name Jesus. May we always call on the holy Name when blessings come our way, in moments of triumph and bliss, when we solve problems or overcome difficulties and trials. May we also call on his Name in moments of trial and need, in our frustrations and heartaches: indeed the Name Jesus is salvation and redemption for all of us.
May the holy Name truly touch our lives and bring blessings and salvation to all.