The liturgical season of Advent, which begins this weekend, is one that often gets overlooked in our day to day lives. For many people, myself included, Advent serves as a sign that Christmas is right around the corner. There is so much that happens at this time of year that it can be easy to forget the deeper meaning of the Advent season and focus only on preparing for Christmas parties and family gatherings.
Our readings this weekend focus on the end times, and remind us that Advent serves a purpose far more sublime than getting ready for Christmas. As this season begins we remind ourselves that we are waiting for Christ to come again in glory at the end of time. It is only in the final days of Advent that we as a Church shift our focus to preparing to celebrate Christmas, reflecting on the events leading to Jesus’ birth.
This weekend the Church reminds us to be prepared for Christ’s second coming, when Christ will be all in all, even though we do not know the day or the hour. Jesus tells us that we don’t have to be burdened by the cares and distress of this world because our redemption is at hand. The knowledge of our promised eternal life with God is what gives us the strength to stand firm in the midst of the trials of this life, with our sights focused on eternal life with God and all his angels and saints in the Kingdom of Heaven.
Throughout this Advent season, the Church invites each of us to reflect on how best to be prepared for the coming of the Lord. As we prepare to celebrate Christmas we are well served to take time to reflect on Jesus’ words, to invite him to prepare our hearts to receive him more fully in the Eucharist, and to meet him when he comes at the end of time. May this Advent season be a time of joyful preparation for the coming of the Lord.
As we begin the month of December, I want to publicly thank Rosetta Dipronio for serving as our temporary receptionist for the past three months. The parish staff is very thankful for you, Rosetta, and for all your hard work! I am also pleased to welcome Rose Marie Ruston as our new temporary receptionist. Be sure to say hi to her if you contact the office. Thank you for your patience during this time of adjustment in our Family of Parishes.