FIRST SUNDAY OF ADVENT
The word ‘advent’ simply means ‘coming’. Frequently advertisers will do their best to entice us by proclaiming the advent of a new age because of the impending arrival of a car or cosmetic or whatever.
This Sunday is the beginning of a new liturgical year and it is the first Sunday of the season of Advent. With its purple colours reminiscent of Lent, the preparatory weeks for the celebration of Easter, Advent calls us to prepare for the coming of Christ at Christmas, the coming of Christ at the end of time and the coming of Christ which happens every time we respond to a person in need.
If someone is coming to visit we prepare by tidying the house, preparing food and drink. When they come we welcome them and make them feel at home.
As committed disciples of Our Lord we are always on the ‘look out’ as it were for his coming. With Christmas, we celebrate the coming of the Word of God in human flesh. Archbishop Coleridge focuses his Advent letter on marriage and the husband and wife becoming one flesh in their loving of each other. Each gives the self to the other for their pleasure, delight and fulfilment. We prepare as well with gift-giving and card sending.
With the end of time coming, we prepare by being aware that this existence is not the sum total of what God has in store for us. We live alert to the possibility that Our Lord will come when we least expect it.
A young monk once asked his abbot what enlightenment was like. The abbot said it was like watching the sun rise in the morning. The young monk then asked the point of the time the community spent in prayer and meditation. “To be sure”, the abbot replied, “that your eyes are open when the sun does rise”.
This insight applies also to our being awake and responsive to those we see in need. Christ may not be easily seen but he tells us that when we show concern to others we show it to him.
So let us stay awake and alert and respond lovingly in all circumstances.
Fr Adrian Farrelly
|Dec 4, 2014||First Sunday of Advent 30.11.2014||Listen||Download|