Weekly Bulletin w/b 3 December
First Sunday of Advent
Almighty God, give us grace to cast away the works of darkness and to put on the armour of light, now in the time of this mortal life, in which your Son Jesus Christ came to us in great humility, that on the last day, when he shall come again in his glorious majesty to judge the living and the dead, we may rise to the life immortal; through him who is alive and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.
Readings at Mass
1st Reading. Isaiah 64:1-9
The prophet recalls God’s past good deeds to his people, and pleads with him to save them from their present sinfulness.
2nd Reading. 1 Corinthians 1:3-9
As we await the coming of Christ in glory, the Holy Spirit keeps us steadfast in bearing witness to him.
Gospel. St Mark 13: 24-end
We need to stay awake at our appointed tasks, because we do not know the hour when Jesus, our Master, will return. Watchfulness, wakefulness, alertness – these are the key words the Gospel uses in relation to the coming of Christ in glory. They are key words for our spiritual life during the Holy season of Advent.
The season of Advent prepares us for Christmas. In order to understand the message of Christmas we have to start at the beginning-with the history of salvation. The Advent liturgy relives in a microcosmic way the history of Israel, viewing it through the eyes of Christian faith. It shows that all of that history was pointing and leading towards Jesus. He was the one who fulfilled the messianic prophecies.
As for today’s readings – the first is a poem, (written by an exile returned from Babylon) entreating God to come and save his people. It recalls God’s past goodness and candidly acknowledges the ingratitude and sinfulness of the people. The second reading and the Gospel talk about the final coming of Christ, something the early Christians believed was imminent. For the faithful, the Lord’s coming is not something to fear. They are urged to live in such a way as to be always ready to meet the Lord. These words are addressed to us now. (Flor McCarthy)
People, look East. The time is near
of the crowning of the year.
Make your house fair as you are able,
trim the hearth and set the table.
People, look East and sing today:
Love, the Guest, is on the way. (Eleanor Farjeon)