Sunday, December 8th
Is 11: 1-10
Ps 72: 1-2. 7-8. 12-13. 17
Rom 15: 4-9
Mt 3: 1-12
A shoot shall come out from the stump of Jesse, and a branch shall grow out of his roots. (Isaiah 11:1)
Welcome one another, therefore, just as Christ has welcomed you, for the glory of God. (Romans 15:7)
John the Baptist proclaimed: ‘Prepare the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.’ One who is more powerful than I is coming after me; I am not worthy to carry his sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. (Matt. 3:1-3; 3: 11)
As we begin the Second Week of Advent, scripture is filled with the themes of welcome, waiting, and preparation. Joseph welcomed Mary and Elizabeth welcomed Mary and the child in her womb. Isaiah proclaims a shoot is coming to us; He, too, must be welcomed. The theme of waiting comes to mind naturally during Advent. Sallie Latkovich, CSJ, reflects that God is always present, always with us. Sallie says: “No, this Advent, I’ve come to see that it’s God who waits for US…” John the Baptist preached: ‘Prepare the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.’ Repentance and change of heart are certainly starting points. If the Baptist says, “I am not worthy to carry his sandals,” what might God be waiting for us to be or do? I suggest that God waits for us to listen to the Holy Spirit, and to be on fire with God’s Love! Only then can we welcome all of God’s people and give glory to God!
God of welcome and waiting, you modeled for us how to be Advent People. You constantly welcome us to repentance and change of heart, to see YOU in all we meet, to show compassion for the oppressed and needy. Give us the courage to welcome your challenges.
To walk with Mary this Advent. Ask Mary to draw us closer to her Son that like Mary we might give a whole-hearted “YES” to whatever is asked!
Sister Rita Schmitz, CSJ
St. Louis, MO