Advent: The Reason for the Season

 

The word Advent means "coming" or "arrival." The focus of the entire season is twofold:  1) a preparation to celebrate of Jesus the Christ in his First Advent; 2) the anticipation of the return of Christ the King. Advent helps us to reflect on the mystery of how God, in his divine providence, prepared the entire human race for salvation through God’s gradual revelation of in Christ, born in the history of the Blessed  Virgin Mary. As we prepare to remember this event, we relive that history and prepare ourselves spiritually. We relive in expectation of the birth of our Savior. The Advent days help to prepare us spiritually for the coming of Christ.

Thus, Advent is a spiritual journey that we as Christians take, through the truths of Scripture that point to the birth of Messiah. The themes we will meet during the four weeks of Advent are Hope, Peace, Joy and God’s love for his people. The readings of Advent in a special way prepare us for the journey towards Christmas. On the first Sunday of Advent, the Gospel from Luke underlines the urgency of our readiness. For the coming of our redemption. On the Second Sunday of Advent, the gospel will quote the prophecy of Isaiah drawing our attention to the preaching and ministry of John the Baptist who came to "Prepare the Way of the Lord." On the Third Sunday, (Laetare Sunday), the Gospel from Luke will speak about the message of John the Baptist to the crowds, tax collectors and the soldiers, exhorting them all to treat others with God’s love and justice. On the Fourth Sunday, the Gospel from Luke will focus our attention on the Visitation of Mary to Elizabeth.

May you have a blessed and fruitful Advent journey.

Monsignor John S. Mbinda