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Advent

See What the End Shall Be – A Homily for the 4th Sunday of Advent

December 23, 2017 3 Comments
See What the End Shall Be – A Homily for the 4th Sunday of Advent

In the Gospel for this Fourth Sunday of Advent, we step back nine months to March 25th, the feast of the Annunciation, an all-but-hidden event that changed the world. God, whose focal presence departed the Temple just prior to the Babylonian invasion (cf Ez 10:18) and the loss of the Ark of the Covenant, now […]

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Late Advent Messages from God to His People

December 20, 2017 0 Comments
Late Advent Messages from God to His People

As the end of Advent approaches, the Office of Readings features some final admonitions from the Book of the Prophet Isaiah. On the one hand they console; on the other, they challenge us to remain firm. Isaiah addressed a people in exile who still awaited the first coming of the Lord. Today, these texts speak […]

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Best Advent Hymn! I Wonder If You’ve Ever Heard of It

December 17, 2017 21 Comments
Best Advent Hymn! I Wonder If You’ve Ever Heard of It

For my money, the best Advent hymn ever is Veni Redemptor Gentium (Come Redeemer of the Nations), written by St. Ambrose in the 4th century. It is more widely known by the title “Come Thou Redeemer of the Earth.” Sadly, it is not often sung in Catholic parishes today. Most Catholics I’ve asked have never […]

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Arise and Go Home – A Mid-Advent Reflection on What Our Savior Offers

December 14, 2017 1 Comment
Arise and Go Home – A Mid-Advent Reflection on What Our Savior Offers

The Gospel for Mass earlier this week (Monday of the Second Week of Advent) is the well-known story of the paralytic. There are many wonderful details that I could discuss (e.g., the four friends who bring him to Jesus—talk about great friends!), but I’d like to focus today on Jesus’ command: “Rise, take up your […]

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Look for Christ in Advent and Do Not Be Dismayed

December 12, 2017 2 Comments
Look for Christ in Advent and Do Not Be Dismayed

During Advent we are reminded to look to Christ and ask for His presence in our life so that we can become deeper, brighter, and richer by His grace. One of our unfortunate tendencies is to be dismayed by the world around us. We must be soberly aware of both the events and conditions in […]

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Walking Toward the Light in Advent

December 10, 2017 1 Comment
Walking Toward the Light in Advent

Many people think of Advent merely in terms of pre-Christmas activities: office parties, shopping, decorating, and so forth. In the Church, though, Advent is something of a penitential period, a time of preparation for both the Christmas Feast and the Second Coming of the Lord. The purple vestments represent penance. The faithful are encouraged to […]

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Run to Jesus! An Advent Reflection

December 6, 2017 1 Comment
Run to Jesus! An Advent Reflection

The Lord’s coming is near. And though we have all been well taught that the word “Advent” means “coming,” there is the danger that we think that we are only passively waiting for Him to come. It is not just that the Lord is coming to us; we are also journeying to Him. In fact, […]

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Preparing our Hearts for Mystery in Advent

December 5, 2017 3 Comments
Preparing our Hearts for Mystery in Advent

As we look toward Christmas and ponder the incarnation, we ought to remember that so profound was truth of the incarnation that the early Church fell to her knees at these words: “and He was incarnate by the Holy Spirit, from the virgin Mary, and became man.” This act of falling to one’s knees at […]

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