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Sunday, December 10
First Saturday of Advent

Preparing for a New Presence

During Advent the Church identifies with John the Baptist and uses his witness to prepare us for the new presence of Christ that will be ours at Christmas. This towering saint, the friend of the Bridegroom, as Luke shows us today in the Gospel, appeared at just the moment God willed for him. He is a figure in time and space, in history. The word of the Lord came to him in “the fifteenth year of the reign of Tiberius Caesar” (probably AD 28-29) and, to prepare Israel for the coming of its Messiah, he preached a “baptism of repentance.” In this way the people could ratify their membership in Israel and accept their vocation. They repented and renounced their sins, accepted a baptism that signified conversion, and committed themselves to God. John was “a voice of one crying out in the desert: “Prepare the way of the Lord.” We prepare the way for the Lord to come into our hearts by repenting of our sins, expressing our conversion by a good confession, accepting our vocation as Christians, and helping others, especially in our families, to prepare their hearts for the grace of Christmas. The Lord is saying to you: listen to John’s words resounding in my Church and yield to what I want to do in your life.


Reflection based on Luke 3:1-6

Father Francis Martin

Loving Father, make me sorrowful for my sins and enable me to yield to what you want to do in my life.

49 posted on 12/10/2006 8:22:49 PM PST by Salvation (†With God all things are possible.†)
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Week 2: Monday
 

Say to those whose hearts are frightened: Be strong, fear not! Here is your God, He comes with vindication; With divine recompense He comes to save you. (Isaiah 35: 4)

Reflection

In a world where political instability threatens long established order, where crime in our country seems out of control and unstoppable, there seems to be plenty to be afraid of. Isaiah reminds us that God’s power is beyond anything on this earth that could frighten us. "Be strong" and "fear not" this Advent.
Is having a frightened heart different that just being afraid? The kind of fear we have in our hearts is usually fear for people we love. God’s care encompasses them as well. Trust God’s power.

Advent Action

Send a Christmas card to a young person you know and care for. Remind them that you are praying for them, and remind them of the faith significance of the upcoming holiday.

Prayer

Lord, You are my strength and with You here, my own fears fade right away.

 

50 posted on 12/10/2006 8:25:46 PM PST by Salvation (†With God all things are possible.†)
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