Sunday, December 5th 2021 | By Rev. Michael P. Hanifin
The readings for the Second Week of Advent offer both encouragement and challenge as we reflect and prepare for the two “comings” of Christ — His coming as a baby on the great feast of Christmas, and the anticipation of His second coming at the end of time.
Our First Reading, from Baruch, is a wonderful reminder that God has triumphed over sin and death and that we — His faithful disciples — will live in the light of His glory one day. Until He comes again, we must remain faithful to Him as true disciples and as his disciples we are productive with all the gifts He has given us such as our time, our talents and abilities and our treasure or material resources (stewardship).
While it can be tempting to give in to the materialism of our age, and temptations of self-indulgence that surround us, this Old Testament reading calls us back to the spiritual reality that this life will one day end because we were made for eternal life with God. We are called to spend this earthly life preparing for eternal life by the way that we use our time, our talents, and our treasure now.
The Gospel reading from Saint Luke shows us how personal and detailed is God’s love for humanity as He prepared the way for Christ’s coming among us. We are told the precise time, place, and person, John the Baptist, He appointed to announce the arrival of our Savior. John tells us how to celebrate to the fullest this first “coming” on the feast of Christmas and how to prepare for the second coming — through repentance for the forgiveness of sin.
This Advent let’s turn away from any bad habits or sin that may have crept into our lives and turn our hearts and minds back to Christ. This is what being a Catholic and a disciple of Jesus Christ is all about — moving closer ever closer in our relationship with Christ and imitation of Him, ready to celebrate His birth, with eyes fixed on eternal life with Him.
Starting in Advent, we will hold a second collection at Masses each Sunday dedicated to raising the needed funds to build our new Church restrooms. You generosity means a lot to me and your fellow parishioners in completing this much needed project.
Given that the end of the year draws near, might I suggest that you would include a year-end donation to the One Faith, One Family, One Future Capital Campaign. We are $107,480 short of the proposed cost of building new restrooms for our Saint Joachim Church. You can donate at www.faith.direct/ca1091 or drop it off in the parish office.