……from your Pastor’s Desk
Happy Gaudete Sunday! Gaudete Sunday happens every year on the third Sunday of Advent. Back in the 1900’s—when most of us were born up until the early 60’s—the words were in Latin: “Gaudete, iterum dico vobis, ‘Gaudete.'” Which means: “Rejoice in the Lord always; again I say, Rejoice! And so, this Sunday is still called “Gaudete Sunday.” The whole message is one of hope and joy. While most of the other readings for the season of Advent are written in a somber tone, the readings for today are meant to remind us of an important and joyous event: the birth of our Lord. You will notice songs of Joy and rejoicing, colorful vestments and the poinsettias will make their first appearance.
This Gaudete Sunday we pause and reflect on the joy of this holy season. How can we not rejoice when we meditate on the wonder of God’s love for us, the wonder of God sending His own Son to save us and the wonder of God’s love that surrounds us always?
Of course, we can look at our world and think that it is a total mess, which many say it is. We can think of all the evil in the world, and there is also truth to that. We can think of all of the suffering of innocent children and that is a reality that should bring us great concern and compassion.
At the heart of the world, however, is love. For those of us who believe, this is an act of faith. How our world changes when we believe in the Scriptures, especially those that are given to us today for this Third Sunday of Advent. The prophets saw what God could do in the world and hoped that it would come about, but they were patient, knowing that God’s time is not our time. God will renew all creation. God will do this when the time is His time.
Advent is about our waiting for the Lord to come into our world and into our lives. We ourselves can be bearers of that presence in our own lives—only if we believe and strive to live that belief. May this Advent strengthen our faith. May the Holy Spirit give us the courage to proclaim the presence of the living God.
One of the greatest signs of our faith is the joy that we can have in living for the Lord. Instead of being anxious and preoccupied with all the evil in our world, with the terrible things that happen, with climate problems and Covid-virus etc., we can radiate the joy of knowing the presence of God. Let us rejoice in Him and be glad!