Fourth Sunday of Advent
Today’s Gospel: Luke 1:39-45
Rejoice! Rejoice! Are you still rejoicing from last Sunday? In this last week of Advent, we are quickly approaching the celebration of the birth of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ! As we patiently await with appreciative abandonment for this beautiful mystery to come to light, we are filled with excitement and anticipation!
In today’s first reading, God foretells to the Prophet Micah the birth of Jesus from the womb of the Blessed Virgin, Mary, to which all will be gathered the children of Israel. Before, sacrifice and offerings of bullocks, goats, etc were made according to the law, not the desire of God. Thanks to the “Yes!” of Mary, an offering of the body of Jesus Christ consecrates us once for all.
Every year old toys, clothes and games are thrown out or donated to make way for the new gifts we receive at Christmas. And, when we receive these new gifts, we are elated with joy! But do we take the time to clear out the things that keep the gifts of God from entering our hearts? We don’t have to wait for Lent to detach ourselves from the things that distract us from God. We can do this year-round, especially by receiving the sacraments often. When we make clear a path, we are able to hear the voice of the Lord and then we too can leap with joy as did the infant in Elizabeth’s womb. Mary wants to bring us the best Christmas gift ever, her Child Jesus, so we may experience the joys and consolations that will bring us new life!!!
So Rejoice! Rejoice now and throughout the year for a Savior is born, Emmanuel!!!
Peace to all and Merry Christmas!!!
Copyright Br. Paul Culver, O.S.B.
Br. Paul Culver, O.S.B. is a Benedictine monk of the Sylvestrine Congregation at St. Benedict Monastery, Oxford, MI.