Well one of my favorite seasons, Advent, started last Sunday (along with the Liturgical Year). With the tendency by some to treat Advent as the beginning of the Christmas season, I though Father gave a wonderful Homily.
While hitting on the themes of the day's Gospel reading of "being prepared" and staying "awake", he made it clear how important it was to let the first coming of Christ remind us of His second. For just as surely as He came once, he would come again. Be prepared, stay awake. And while we wait, be a thief of souls for Christ.
After Mass I read Father's weekly article in the bulletin. It was one of his shortest, but I think it was one of his best. It really catches Advent's essence and heart beautifully. I hope he doesn't mind, but I typed it out and included it below.
The Advent season is such a beautiful time of the year. The silence-with-darkness of approaching Winter whispers an invitation to contemplation, in preparation for the coming of the Son of God. It’s a season of penance and poetry, aching in the expatriation of our fallen world, for the beatitude of redeemed Israel. To miss these weeks of longing through premature Christmas cheer is a slide into a superficial spirit. Ecstatic union is far greater as a satiated culmination of hopes, desires, and yearning. Can the mountain top experience of our faith be great, if the perceived depth of our poverty is shallow?
“O Come O Come Emmanuel and ransom captive Israel,
That mourns in lonely exile here, until the Son of God appear.”
This passing age, indeed its strife will cease, all shadows recede and hatred flee. The weight of sin, the chaos of tyranny, the impulse of greed, fear, pride, selfishness will give way to the Love and Light of the Word Incarnate. Jesus, the Son of God, Word made Flesh, Splendor of the never-ending day, approaches. By prayer, fasting, the reading of scripture, Confession, celebrating the Eucharist, and acts of charity, we must prepare the way.