Reflection for the Third Sunday of Advent…
3rd Sunday of Advent
Readings (Year A)
A Thought for the day …
GAUDETE !… REJOICE !
Today is named ‘Gaudete’ Sunday, taken from the opening antiphon of the Mass. It means to rejoice. We are given reasons for rejoicing. The Israelites were told in the first reading that the wilderness and the wasteland would bloom and what was thought impossible would take place. It is a call to hope.
Today for us with the threat of global warming and climate change many wonder if things are not gone too far for our planet because of what we have done to it ourselves by misusing God’s gifts. But we are being given a wake-up call by environmentalists and as Isaiah again reminds us: ’Courage, Do not be afraid, your God is coming to save you’.
In the gospel Jesus says us: ‘Blessed is the person who does not lose faith in me’. Modern life is becoming increasingly stressful. Christmas often brings more work and stress. Some people feel overwhelmed and wonder if they will be able to cope. Again the words of Isaiah may be of help: ‘Courage do not be afraid’.
At times we are bewildered by some of the things that are happening in our world: tragedies, violence, wars, famines, genocide, the rapid spread of cocaine use in Ireland and young people dying as a result. We may indeed feel numbed and wonder why God doesn’t intervene. In the midst of our bewilderment may we hear the word of Jesus: ‘Blessed is the person who does not lose faith’ in me.
May the Holy Spirit increase our faith and trust so that as St. Paul writes in the end of his letter to the Romans: ‘ May the God of hope bring you such joy and peace in your faith that the power of the Holy Spirit will remove all bounds to hope.’ We pray this through Christ our Lord’. Maranatha, Come Lord Jesus. Amen.
– Fr Jim Kirstein SMA