Joy in Mary: Come into the Light
Today, the 3rd Sunday of Advent, is called “Gaudete Sunday” or Rejoice Sunday. The joy of this day is reflected in the lighting of the pink candle on the Advent wreath. This is a joyful reminder that the first part of Advent is over (the part that focuses on the 2nd coming of Jesus) and a sign of expectation as Christmas (the 1st coming of Jesus) draws closer. In addition, last Thursday, December 12, was the feast day of Our Lady of Guadalupe, the patroness of the Americas and an important celebration for our Mexican Catholics (it is a holy day of obligation in Mexico).
The first reading talks about how the desert and the parched land will exalt, and how the steppe will rejoice and bloom. In other words, this prophecy about the Messiah is saying he (the Messiah) will bring life and joy to what is dry and level or plain. We are often just plain, dry people. We rejoice today because our hope explodes in the presence of Mary, the Mother of Jesus and Our Lady of Guadalupe. She brought a message of hope to the people of Mexico. She brings that same message of hope to each of us today. She brings God’s Son to the world and with Him God’s everlasting love. Our Lady of Guadalupe and the 3rd Sunday of Advent remind us to rejoice, for “the coming of the Lord is at hand.” As we “come into the light” may we more fully give ourselves over to Him, bringing new life and joy to our lives and thereby, new life and joy to the world. Blessings.