Happy Advent my young friends,
The season of Advent is here and it is time for the preparations to begin. Think about how joyful and excited you feel when you know someone special is coming for a visit. Maybe it’s your grandparents, or maybe aunts, uncles and cousins that you only see once a year. Whatever the case, our hearts and minds are often so filled with anticipation during that time of waiting that it’s all we think about. Shouldn’t we feel the same about the coming of our savior Jesus Christ?
The Gospel readings for Advent are all taken from Matthew this year, and they speak in different ways about getting ready and preparing for the coming of the Lord. We all need to prepare and be open, just as Joseph was when he was told that Mary, his fiancée, was pregnant. He wanted to end the engagement, but an angel came to him and told him not to be afraid. The angel told Joseph that Mary would have a son called Jesus who would save his people from their sins. And on that Christmas night in Bethlehem, Jesus was given to the world.
By now, you have heard this story and several other stories leading up to Christ’s birth many times, and that will continue throughout your life. This time of Advent is an opportunity for review. The more familiar we become with the stories of faith, the more we can apply them to our lives. We are called to be lifelong learners of faith, hope and charity.
In preparation for the joy of Christmas, let us focus on these stories, slow down, and anticipate Christ’s coming just as we would wait for a family member’s arrival. Let us look for ways that we can bring our faith to life by offering hope to those who are hopeless and charity to those most in need this holiday season.
Jesus is the reason for the season. May you and your family have a blessed Advent and a very Merry Christmas!