Second Week of Advent
December 10 & 14 RCIA Session
Isaiah 40:1-5, 9-11
Psalm 85:9-10, 11-12, 13-14,
2 Peter 3:8-14
"As it is written in Isaiah, the prophet:
'Behold, I am sending my messenger ahead of you; he will prepare your way. A voice crying out in the desert: 'Prepare the way of the Lord, make straight his paths.'" -cf. Mark 1:1-8
"Amen, I say to you, among those born of women there has been none greater than John the Baptist; yet the least in the Kingdom of Heaven is greater than he." -Matthew 11:11
ANNOUNCEMENTS: December 14 & 17 are last RCIA Sessions before Christmas
- On Thursday, December 14, all RCIA groups will meet as usual. That Thursday will be the last Thursday RCIA Session of 2017. The next RCIA Session will be January 4, 2018.
- Sunday, December 17, will be the last RCIA Session of the year for the Sunday RCIA groups. The next Sunday morning RCIA Session will be Sunday, January 7, 2018.
- The RCIA Sponsors, Catechists and Shepherds will have a special celebration along with the CRSP Team on Thursday, December 21, at 6:15 pm in the Cafeteria.
May every one of you know the joy and peace of our Savior, Jesus Christ, this Christmas!
PRACTICE THE FAITH: Pondering Hearts
- Focus on stillness and waiting in these last weeks of Advent. Allow yourself to experience the brokenness in your life, those things large or small that are worrisome, sinful, or needing redemption. Then wait and watch for the ways that God enters into these same places of darkness with His mantle of grace, with light and peace: God promises to come, we watch for the mysterious ways that God comes to us all the time, especially when we are most in need. Ponder all God's gifts of mercy and love in your life during these coming weeks of Advent and Christmas.
- Before taking on any special Advent or Christmas Customs in your life or home, be sure to take time in stillness and prayer - build stillness and a watchful attentiveness into all your customs. Consider making the manger scene and the advent wreath prayers your central customs for Advent, as you continue to pray and to reach out to those who are suffering in any way. Pray the blessing of your Nativity Scene at time that seems right for you - or pray it many times, if that makes sense to you.
CONNECTIONS: Making Space, Pondering - the Blessing of a Creche by the United States Bishops
Use this blessing of the Nativity Scene in your own home, with family or friends.
The footnote in the Bible for Matthew 11:11 says this: "John the Baptist's preeminent greatness lies in his function of announcing the imminence of the Kingdom. But to be in the Kingdom is so great a privilege that the least who has it is greater than the Baptist." What does it mean to you that you have this great privilege to live even now in the Kingdom of God? How is the coming of the Kingdom in the Incarnation of Jesus important to you in your daily life? How do you remain aware of this great privilege? How are you, like John the Baptist, called to prepare the way of the Lord? How will you continue to "make straight the way of the Lord"? What special gifts has God bestowed upon you, to help prepare His way?
Take time to ponder a little every day, or multiple times every day, throughout the Advent and Christmas time, the ways in which God remains close to you, living in your heart and life? What stories from Scripture and from life help you realize and remember all that God is doing and has done for you, for us all?