(3rd Sunday of Advent, Gaudete Sunday)
Advent occurs at a time of the year where many people have the relief of breaking from both education and work. Yet this liturgical season still asks of us a penitential disposition. Like Lent, it is a time of fasting and prayer as we prepare ourselves for the coming of Christ. However, the Church in this third week of Advent affords us some reprieve as the mood is ‘lightened’ somewhat to encourage us in our spiritual preparation.
‘Gaudate’ Sunday (Latin for ‘rejoice’) is symbolised through the lighting of the pink candle and the wearing of rose coloured vestments by the priest. The theme of rejoicing is also emphasised through the readings, where joy, prayer and thanksgiving are said to be an essential part of people of God.
Again in our Gospel this week, John the Baptist is held out to us as an example for his commitment to the Kingdom of God. As a man of fasting and prayer, he also rejoiced over Jesus’ arrival. Let us also do the same!!
Gob Bless Fr Graeme