Sisters of the Holy Cross » spirituality » First Sunday of Advent 2021

First Sunday of Advent 2021

November 28, 2020

Jeremiah 33:14-16
1 Thessalonians 3:12-4:2
Luke 21:25-36; Psalm 24

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Enlightened and strengthened with open hearts, let us begin our journey with courage in preparation for the celebration of the coming of Jesus. The readings for this first Sunday of Advent invite us to watch and pray.

The prophet Jeremiah tells us: “Behold, the days will come, says the Lord, that I will bring to pass the promise of future goods for the house of Israel and for the house of Judah.” We are in the season of Advent, a time of waiting, a time in which hopes are renewed for more solidarity, more love, more humanity, more mutual acceptance, and more justice. “Behold, days are coming.” Thus begins the text in which the Word of God will be fulfilled.

The prophet Jeremiah lived at the time of several kings in Israel. He experienced rejection, hostility, humiliation and indifference, but he did not let himself be defeated. He fought for fullness. As a prophet, he announced and denounced injustices, but in the midst of all the suffering he announced words of hope and encouraged the people not to lose heart. The Lord is our righteousness.

We, too, and the people in general have experienced bitter, difficult, heavy, unfair times due to the practices of the ills committed by a system of government exacerbated by the exploitation of humanity and our common home. The prophet Jeremiah’s desire is our desire, a society built on love, sharing, fraternity, dialogue and respect for diversity, where the rights of the poor and vulnerable are respected.

St. Paul’s text to the Thessalonians expresses the desire for people to grow in transforming love for one another, for the coming of Jesus is at hand. The Gospel according to Luke speaks of the signs that will accompany the coming of Jesus and invites us to be vigilant. Today, there are many situations that enslave people and make them live in an egocentric way, closed in on themselves and not inclined to altruistic practices. Pray and watch. This is the path we are invited to take in this Advent season.

Praying means placing oneself in the presence of the Lord, in a dialogic attitude. Watching means being attentive, to live in accordance with the Gospel. We cannot let selfishness and callousness harden us, not let the Word touch us or grace reach our hearts.

The psalm invites us to make an alliance, where true love is the way of the Lord, seeking to rescue hearts with affection, empathy and compassion.

Questions for reflection:

  • Faced with challenges, how do I respond to the mission?
  • How do I understand: “May your hearts not become heavy with the worries of life”?

Sister Maria de Lourdes de Deus Pimentel, CSC