Spiritual Reflection 12/13/2020

+Dear Saint David Parishioners,

Today is Gaudete Sunday, a day of rejoicing, the wearing of the pink. In the readings for this third Sunday of Advent, we note that there is definitely a lot of rejoicing going on! In the first reading we read “to announce a year of favor from the Lord.” We certainly would welcome a year of favor, Lord, especially during this time of COVID-19. Then we would join with Isaiah and say, “I rejoice heartily in the Lord, in my God is the joy of my soul.” This joyful sentiment does not have to wait for good times but can also be echoed during the difficult challenges of life. How, you may ask? The truth is, God is always present with us in all the ups and downs and in-betweens of life. Jesus tells us Himself in Matthew 28:20, “I am with you always, until the end of the age!”

In the responsorial psalm the Blessed Mother proclaims her love and trust in God as her soul “proclaims the greatness of the Lord.” Her prayer, called the Magnificat is recited by Catholics throughout the world each evening in the Liturgy of the Hours. Some writers have suggested that in places where Mary says, my or me, we replace these pronouns with our own name.

Mary shows definite trust in God because she was not yet married, a young girl of about 13 or 14 years of age, and now she had to tell her fiancée that an angel of the Lord appeared to her and told her that by the power of the Holy Spirit she would bear a Son who would be the Savior of the world. If we picture the scene and imagine for a moment the possible reaction of Joseph — WOW! Mary certainly had deep faith in God and in her beloved Joseph. He gently listened, perhaps nodded his head, and then thought, “What have I gotten myself into?” He too was a man of deep faith and so in a dream to Joseph, an angel confirmed what Mary had told him; therefore, he did not divorce her, but cared for her tenderly, and raised Jesus as if He were his own son.

What beautiful models we have in the Holy Family.  We know, as Scriptures tell us, that Jesus grew in wisdom, age, and grace. Why? Because Mary and Joseph taught young Jesus the love of God and read and discussed the Scriptures with Him. Wouldn’t you have loved to have heard those discussions and the insights of young Jesus, our God and Savior?

This Advent as a family, you too could have similar conversations with your children. As the days until Christmas are fast approaching, take time as a family to read the nativity narratives. You will be surprised at the children’s insights. You may also participate in some family activities together, such as making Christmas cookies, watching Christmas movies, decorating the house and the children’s bedrooms, to list just a few ideas. 

One year many years ago when I taught fifth grade, I gave the following assignment: Pretend you are a prophet today.  Write to the people of your town to prepare for Christ’s coming.  Here is Nicole’s response:

ATTENTION, T.V. WATCHERS – YES, YOU!!!  This is the Prophet Nicole and I have a Christmas message for you. Do not attempt to adjust your television set because I am on all channels.

Do you remember Jesus on His birthday, Christmas Day?  Or are you so caught up with the material “things” of Christmas such as shopping, toys, gifts, and things that you want that you forget the real meaning of this day.

I tell you the time is now to prepare for Jesus.  Make your shopping list, but examine your conscience.  Buy your gifts, but remember to give to the poor.  Make your Christmas wish list, but do not forget to confess your sins.  If you make these your priorities, you will receive the greatest Christmas gift of all – our Lord.  My friends, celebrate Jesus’ birthday as you would your own, with anticipation, excitement, happiness, and most of all with love in your heart.

I now return you to your regularly scheduled program already in progress.
~Prophet Nicole

With these words, I pray that all of us enjoy a very fruitful and peaceful Advent, a blessed Christmas, and a Happy New Year 2021

In Mary’s Immaculate Heart, I am,
Sister Mary

Rejoice in the Lord, always: again, I say, rejoice. Indeed the Lord is near.
Goal for the week… Spread Christian Joy!