Today we begin the beautiful and holy season of Advent. With all that we have going on this time of year, it’s no wonder Advent that does not always seem to get the attention it deserves. But if we will commit to living this season well, we will experience a deeper conversion to Christ and find real transformation in our lives as Christians.
So, “Be watchful! Be alert!” There’s nothing “Christmassy” about Sunday's
Bible readings. In fact, our Bible readings won’t direct us to Christmas until the Fourth Sunday of Advent. . . which falls on the morning of Christmas Eve this year! So, this year, Advent is only three weeks and one day! And, YES, that means our holy obligation is to attend both Mass for Sunday, December 24 in the morning (or the Vigil on December 23) and then Christmas Eve or Christmas Day Mass. In fact, Father Mathew and I will be celebrating 11 Masses between 5:30 PM December 23 and 12 Noon on December 25, so that means we look forward to seeing you TWICE in just about 24 hours!
And stay alert for more! Don’t forget we celebrate the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of Mary this Friday, December 8. It’s a Holy Day of Obligation and the Patronal Feast of our United States of America. We’ll have the Vigil Mass in Spanish on December 7 at 7:30 PM and Masses in English on December 8 at 8:00 AM and 7:00 PM. We’re also adding extra times for Confession during Advent: Every Friday at 6:00 PM and every Sunday at 4:30 PM.
Our lives are a gift. This holy season is a gift. Let us recommit to living our Christian way of life. Love came down to us as a Baby. And He is coming again. So, “Be watchful! Be alert!”
Fr. Mark Zacker