He Came, He Comes, and He will Come
Happy New Year! That might sound strange, but the reality is we have just started a new year in our Church. Advent is the beginning of the church’s liturgical year. Our Sunday Scriptures also shifts from St. Matthew to St. Mark. The Gospel of St. Mark will guide us through 2021 as we continue to grow deeper in our relationship with God.
It is interesting to note that St. Mark starts his Gospel with these words, “The beginning of the good news about Jesus the Messiah, the Son of God.” In his gospel, St. mark will unravel what that means. He will share with us Jesus’ life, ministry, passion, death, and resurrection and how these events will point to Jesus as the Son of God.
Advent is not only a preparation for the feast of Christmas, but it also opens our hearts and minds to knowing more about the mystery of God’s love. Advent points to the “three comings of Christ” – He came, He comes, and He will come.
The first two weeks of Advent is focused on the second coming of Christ. That time when we will be gathered to be all in all. When we will finally celebrate the wedding feast, the heavenly liturgy. We will notice that our scripture readings for these weeks are all about the end times. Although they might sound frightening, the apocalyptic literature is not meant to scare us, but to give us hope. The readings will remind us that in the midst of fear, pain, confusion, and chaos, God is with us! God is in control of everything. All we need to do is to put our faith in God.
As we get closer to December 25th, our readings will shift from the end times to the infancy narratives. We will be reminded as to how the first Christmas came about. The readings will remind us of the silent, but obedient Joseph. Mary, the young courageous woman, who said YES to becoming the Mother of the Savior. Zechariah and Elizabeth, the faithful and faith-filled couple. John the Baptist, the precursor, and the Old testament prophets who prophesied the coming of the Messiah.
Finally, Advent reminds us to be aware of Christ’s presence today. He comes to us in Word and in the Sacrament of His Body and Blood. He is also present in each one of us, in every person we encounter.
To help us prepare during this Season of Advent, I have worked with Merry and Leah on some things the parish offers. We will be offering weekly faith sharing focusing on specific topics. I’ve invited a good friend of mine, Fr. Rene Lopez a Sulpician priest, a scripture scholar and on staff at the Assumption Seminary in San Antonio, Texas, to facilitate our parish mission. I’d like to invite and encourage you to please attend these virtual preparations specially crafted for our community. Kindly visit our website and our ebulletin for the schedule of events.
I’d like to assure you once again of my prayers. Please continue to stay safe and healthy. I wish you a Blessed Advent Season!