1st Sunday of Advent

Gospel: Luke 21:25-28, 34-36

(If you do not have your own Bible, you can visit universalis.com/mass.htm for the readings at Mass)

Dear friend,

Peace be with you! And happy new year, as the first Sunday of Advent is the beginning of the new liturgical year.

Our Gospel for the 1st Sunday of Advent begins where the readings from last liturgical year left off. Jesus himself confirms His glorious second coming. The Gospel’s call for us is to remain vigilant because the Day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night. In some translations, it says “like a trap” instead of “like a thief”. This is a call for us to be prepared by praying fervently and frequently, so that our faith in the Lord will be strong and stable.

With the beginning of Advent, the color used in the church changes to violet, or purple, as used during Lent. This became the advent color when Advent was considered a penitential time of preparation for Christmas. However, that has changed and many parishes choose to use a different, brighter purple, because Advent is now considered a joyful time of expectation.

Joe Paprocki of Loyola Press, a Jesuit Ministry, explained that the Season of Advent is an opportunity for us to focus on what we are thankful for, especially, knowing that more good things are coming. It is a time of longing for something good that we know is coming. It is totally different from the waiting we experience while at the airport or in the doctor’s office. The waiting we experience during Advent is not fearful nor despairing. It is joyful and confident. Why? Because love is coming. Love is what enables us to carry on everyday in the midst of the darkness that surrounds us. And, love is Jesus.

Still a time of preparation, it is a time for spiritual “putting our hearts in order,” but not with the penitential aspect of Lent.

REFLECTION GUIDE:

Let us reflect on our present life and ask ourselves, “If Jesus were to come to us today, am I ready to meet Him?”

Sources:

-Joe Paprocki. Loyola Press, a Jesuit Ministry.

-2011 Resource Publications, Inc.

-29/29 Nov 2015 bulletin. Church of St. Mary of the Angels

-Msgr. Philip Heng, S.J.. DGems app

-Universalis: Mass

-image source: scriptoriumdaily.com/real-advent/

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