Dear St. Philip Neri Families & Friends,
We give praise and thanks to God for the graces He has given. As we light the first candle on the Advent Wreath, we embark on a sacred journey of anticipation and preparation. The liturgical season of Advent calls us to pause, reflect, and open our hearts to the coming of Christ. The First Sunday in Advent invites us to focus on the theme of hope. In the midst of a world often marked by uncertainty and turmoil, we are reminded that our hope is anchored in the promises of God.
The prophet Isaiah, whose words echo through the ages, speaks of a future filled with the light of the Lord. “Come, let us walk in the light of the Lord!” (Isaiah 2:5) As we meditate on the Scripture readings for today, we are called to examine our hearts and ask ourselves: What does it mean to hope in the Lord? How can we cultivate a spirit of joyful expectation as we await the celebration of the Incarnation?
St. Philip Neri would like that. Advent is not merely a countdown to Christmas; it is a season of spiritual preparation. It is a time to prepare the way for the lord in our hearts, making room for Jesus amidst the busyness of our lives. The Gospel reading reminds us of the importance of staying awake and alert, for we do not know the day or the hour when the Son of Man will come (Matthew 24:37-44). This vigilance is not one of fear, but of hope and readiness.
In the hustle and bustle of the season, let us carve out moments of stillness and prayer. Let us reflect on the blessings of the past year, acknowledging God’s faithfulness, and surrendering our worries and anxieties to Him. As we wait in hope, may we also actively engage in acts of kindness and charity, becoming beacons of Christ’s love in a world that hungers for hope and peace.
The Advent Wreath, with its first candle aglow, symbolizes the flicker of hope that dispels the darkness. As we gaze upon this flame, may it serve as a tangible reminder of the Light that is to come. Let us journey through Advent with hearts full of hope, trusting in the promise of Emmanuel, God with us.
Please invite someone to Mass.
St. Philip Neri pray for us!
Have a blessed week!
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