Sunday, December 13, 2020

Third Sunday of Advent

Gaudete Sunday: Rejoice in the Lord always; again I say, rejoice. Indeed the Lord is near.

Year of Saint Joseph

In other years: Saint Lucy, Virgin, Martyr (4th century); Saint Eustratius of Armenia and Other Martyrs (? Late 3rd century); Saint Judoc (668); Saint Aubret of Arras-Cambrai, Bishop (668 or 669); Saint Odilia, Abbess (c. 720); Bd John Marinoni (1562); Bd Antony Grassi (1671)

Readings of the Day

RB: Ch 59 The Offering of Children by Nobles or by the Poor

Mass: Is 61:1-2a; 10-11; Resp Ps (Lk 1); 1 Th 5:16-24; Jn 1:6-8, 19-28

He has remembered His promise of mercy.


Faith commits everyone one of us to become a living sign of the presence of the Risen Lord in the world. What the world is in particular need of today is the credible witness of people enlightened in mind and heart by the word of the Lord, and capable of opening the hearts and minds of many to the desire for God and for true life, life without end.
(Pope Benedict XVI, Porta fidei Door of faith, 15)

Welcome to Gaudete Sunday and another appearance from John the Baptist, today according to Saint John (Jn 1:6-8, 19-28). Last Sunday, Saint Mark (Mk 1:1-8) related that John the Baptist appeared in the desert proclaiming a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. Folks from all over went to John to be baptized in the Jordan as they acknowledged their sins. The Baptist's voice rings loud and clear: Prepare the way of the Lord, make straight His paths. The Baptist was pointing to the One, mightier than he, who was coming after him. John was testifying to the light, we hear from Saint John. John was not the Christ, as he boldly admitted to those who questioned him. No, says John, I am the voice of one crying out in the desert, 'make straight the way of the Lord'. John directed the people to Jesus, the one coming after him, whose sandal strap John was not worthy to untie. 

Throughout this morning, I have asked myself how I am preparing the way of the Lord, to reverently remember the First Coming of the Son of God, and also to look forward to Christ's Second Coming at the end of time, all with open mind and heart. How am I giving witness to our faith so as to make straight the way of the Lord? How in word and deed am I pointing to the One, Jesus the Son of God?

If you are looking for ways to better prepare the way of the Lord, and point to the Mighty One Jesus the Christ, turn to Saint Paul in today's second reading (1 Th 5:16-22). "Rejoice always. Pray without ceasing. In all circumstances give thanks, for this is the will of God for you in Christ Jesus. Do not quench the Spirit. Do not despise prophetic utterances. Test everything; retain what is good. Refrain from every kind of evil." 

May the God of peace make you perfectly holy and may you entirely, spirit, soul, and body, be preserved blameless for the coming of Our Lord Jesus Christ. The one who calls you is faithful, and he will also accomplish it.
(1 Th 5:22-24)

John the Baptist is a model for those in the Church who are called to proclaim Christ to others; they are able to do so only by detaching from themselves and from worldliness, by not attracting people to themselves, but directing them to Jesus.
(Pope Francis, Angelus Address, December 13, 2020)


© Gertrude Feick 2020

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