Today is “Gaudete Sunday,” or “Rejoice Sunday”, the third Sunday of Advent. In the first reading the prophet Zephaniah reminds us to “shout for joy,” while in the second reading St. Paul reminds us to “rejoice in the Lord always.” In the gospel a question is asked of John the Baptist – What are we to do? The question is about how to live the faith. One important ingredient is joy. There is something very attractive about joyful people. Mother Teresa and her sisters, while living in the simplest fashion exuded joy and this in itself attracted many to the faith. Let us be joyful people. May our joy attract those who have fallen away from the Church to consider coming back.
Today we light the pink candle of the Advent wreath to remind us that the first part of Advent is over (the part that focused primarily on the future coming of Christ). During this second part of Advent we focus on the first coming of Jesus, an event that occurred over 2000 years ago in Bethlehem. On this Gaudete Sunday let us be filled with joy for God has visited His people. As we focus on the Incarnation/Christmas event, let us do so with the joy of our childhood. What a wondrous gift that God would become one of us. Share that gift with joy-filled hearts. Peace and blessings to you all.