Mass & Directions

Sunday December 22nd: 4th Sunday of Advent

St. Francis Parish | December 24, 2019, 10:42 pm | Reflections

   In today’s scripture readings, there is an overwhelming message beginning in the first reading.  ” The Virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall name him Emmanuel.” (IS 7:14, MT 1:23)  This is what the people of the time were longing for.  This is what we in our time are anticipating in Celebration of Jesus’s birth on Christmas morning.  Though this Scripture tells of Our Blessed Mother Mary, in Matthew’s Gospel, he tells of Joseph’s role in Our Lord’s birth.
   It would be very difficult to imagine Joseph’s emotion during this time.  First, having discovered that his betrothed was with child and making the decision to divorce her quietly.  Then, to have the Angel of The Lord speak to him in the night, explaining what only someone of infallible faith could accept so quickly.  Just as Mary had before when the Angel spoke to her, Joseph now accepts God’s will as told him by the Angel.
   Today’s Gospel brings to mind the question we could all ask ourselves.  How have we been responding to God’s will in our lives?  First, we may need to ask are we even listening?  Have we invested time in maintaining open dialogue with our Lord?  Have we dedicated ample time to pray?  Not only as a means of asking The Lord for protection or healing but to ask him what he has in mind for us.  Let this be the challenge we set for ourselves this coming week.  Let us discern how we are listening and in the coming year, let us work to be more receptive.  Let us turn down the volume of the many distractions we allow in our lives so that when God calls, we may hear.
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