Date: Sunday, December 01, 2019
Have you noticed how networks report the News? No matter what is happening in the world, the lead item is often the weather. The meteorologist is tracking some storm moving across the nation with fierce winds, rain or snow or ice. It does catch our attention. With the chance of ice and snow tomorrow morning, I was guessing a bigger crowd at the 5 PM Mass on Saturday. Weather can change our behavior or our plans especially returning home after Thanksgiving.
On this First Sunday of Advent, the beginning of the New Church Year, we are no longer proclaiming the Gospel according to Luke. We are listening to the Gospel according to Matthew. Jesus catches the attention of his disciples in the Gospel according to St. Matthew by calling to mind the days of Noah and the great flood. Unaware of coming torrential rain, people are distracted by daily pursuits and then are carried away in the flood. Jesus applies this biblical reference to the present moment and the mysterious coming of the Son of Man when two men will be out in the field, one will be taken, one left. Two women will be grinding at the mill, one will be taken one will be left. Jesus is telling his disciples to be alert! “For you do not know on which day your Lord will come.” Jesus is speaking of the end time, the consummation of all things. But we can take his words to heart about our own existence. What am I doing with the precious time God has given to me?” Now is the time of our salvation.
Advent is about the coming of Christ – as the Son of Man in glory in the fullness of time to judge all nations; his coming long ago as the Messiah, born of the House of David at Bethlehem; and his coming or presence with us now at Mass, in the sacraments or hidden within the person most in need. Our Gospel is from Matthew chapter 24. In chapter 25, Jesus tells his disciples of the Judgment of the Nations. The nations will be assembled before the Great King. The King will separate them like a shepherd separating sheep and goats. He will place those blessed by his Father on the right for unknowingly they cared for him in the least of their brothers and sisters. “Amen I say to you, whatever you do for one of the least of my brothers and sisters you do unto me.”
Advent is season to be alert for the coming of Christ wherever we may find him – even being birthed in us.