The Season of Advent
From the Pastor...
On Sunday, December 3, we begin a new liturgical year with the season of Advent. This wonderful, yet too often, overlooked, season affords us the opportunity to prepare for the coming of Christ. As the season of Advent begins, we are reminded that there are three comings of Christ we celebrate:  his coming into human history at Bethlehem,  his coming at the end of human history,  and his coming into our hearts. In today’s Gospel, Jesus reminds us that we do not know the day or the hour when the Lord of the House is coming – therefore, we must be alert. Let us take time during this wonderful season of preparation to make ourselves ready for the coming of Christ, not only at Christmas, but for all eternity. During this Advent season, let us welcome the radiant light which is the Lord, Jesus Christ – Emmanuel, into our hearts and into our homes.
JOHN THE FORERUNNER
In addition to Christ himself, two people stand as a hallmark of the Advent season – The Blessed Virgin Mary and John the Baptizer. The icon of John the Forerunner depicts him as the adult prophet who is preparing the world for the coming of Jesus Christ. Illustrated in his camel hair coat and leather belt and with his wild hair, he also holds the scroll announcing to “repent, for the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand.” May the image of Saint John during advent challenge us to work to prepare the way of the Lord.
ADVENT RECONCILIATION SERVICE
Our Advent Reconciliation Service will be next Monday, December 11 in the Church. The service will begin at 7:00pm. Please plant to join us as we prepare our hearts, as well as our homes, for the coming of Christ at Christmas.
ADVENT FAITH FORMATION
This year, we will have two Advent Faith Formation sessions. On Wednesday, December 13 at 6:30pm, we will welcome Sister Regina Rogers of the Ursuline Sisters to our parish for a presentation of the Blessed Mother in Advent, titled “Mary, Woman of Joy, Disciple of Faith”. A light reception will follow. Please plan to join us.
This year, we will be again using the Eucharistic Prayers for Reconciliation I & II at our Sunday celebrations during the Advent season. These are designed to be used during times of reconciliation and penance and are particularly fitting during the Advent and Lenten seasons. As we heed the call of the Baptizer and prepare the way for the Lord, we are all in need of preparing our hearts, which in most cases, calls for repentance and change of heart. May these Eucharistic Prayers not merely serve to change bread and wine into the Body and Blood of Christ, but may they serve to transform our hearts into a loving dwelling place for Emmanuel – God with Us.