Sunday, November 29th 2020 | By Rev. Michael P. Hanifin
We have been seeing an increase in the infections of COVID-19 and our public officials and public service announcements tell us we need to prevent our own infection through preparation such as wearing face masks, washing our hands frequently, and social distancing especially when around large groups of people. Now have seen the state-wide implementation of a Curfew that lasts from 10:00 PM to 5:00 AM. All of this to curb the infection and help us remain healthy.
On a brighter note, this Sunday begins the beautiful and holy season of Advent. With the hustle and bustle going on this time of year, it is no wonder Advent does not always get the attention it deserves. But if we will commit to living this season well, we will experience a deeper conversion to Christ and find real transformation in our lives as Catholic Christians.
Why? Advent calls us not only to look back in grateful contemplation of Christ’s first coming, but it also calls us to look forward in preparation for His Second Coming. Advent is a time to reset and regroup, to repent over any misplaced priorities, to turn our minds and hearts back to God while we still have time. We do so not out of fear or guilt, but rather, out of gratitude for Love Incarnate lying in a manger bed.
Whatever we feel God calling us to do this Advent — committing to reflect on each day’s Gospel reading, visiting a lonely neighbor, or donating money to those in dire need — there is no time to waste.
Jesus made this clear in our Gospel passage from Matthew. He tells the parable of a man going off on a journey. Before he leaves, he “places his servants in charge, each with his own work.” We, of course, are the servants in this parable, each with a mission to accomplish in building the Kingdom of God. Jesus warns us over and over in this passage to remain vigilant to the work He has given us to do because we do not know when we will be called to give an account for it.
Our lives are a gift. This holy season is a gift. We are invited to recommit ourselves to living a devoted Christian life. Two thousand years ago Love came down to us as a Baby. And He will certainly come again. It is now up to each of us to be watchful as well as prepared for his arrival!