The Third Sunday of Advent is known as Gaudete Sunday. This day is named for a Latin word that means “rejoice.”
Today’s readings remind us that people have always yearned for justice, healing, peace, and liberty. Like our ancestors in faith, we await God’s promised one and we are called to actively prepare ‘the way of the Lord.’
In St. John’s Gospel, John the Baptist announces the coming of the Messiah. John the Baptist prepares the way for Jesus. He spoke about Jesus and help people be ready for his message. He proclaims that the Messiah will shatter the darkness that envelops the world. He will illuminate a new vision with compassion and justice. Like the prophets, John was sent to help people return to God’s ways.
St. Paul’s words call the Thessalonians to anticipate the Lord’s coming, while encouraging them to be continuously joyful. “Rejoice always. Pray without ceasing.” Amid suffering, anxieties, and struggles, we wonder how that is even possible. As we become aware of what the world is, and of what the world ought to be, we can rejoice in our discovery of God. We can easily miss the reasons for joy that are already in our lives.
Take time this Advent to look directly at the brokenness of the world in the light of the Messiah. Give thanks to God for never-ending joy; for helping us to recognize hope filled moments, each and everyone.
Thank you for your generosity to our Giving Tree and the Fund for Religious Retirement.
I encourage you to make plans to spend time with the Lord. May you find joy in these moments and in your preparation for Christmas.
Have a blessed week! Fr. Len