Adult Faith Formation Column for the Sunday Bulletin of St. Michael Parish, Livermore, California

This weekly column is a short meditation on the Bible readings of the Sunday Mass. The meditations are direct quotations from the Catechism of the Catholic Church, papal encyclicals, writings of the Saints, and similar orthodox sources.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Sunday 4 December 2011

Everyone Shall See the Salvation of God
        "All mankind shall see the salvation of God" (Lk 3:6).

    God's salvation is the work of a love greater than man's sin.  Love alone can wipe out sin and liberate from sin.  Love alone can consolidate man in the good; in the unalterable and eternal good.

    It is exactly this God of our Advent:  the Creator and Redeemer, who makes this profession of such love for man, for man the sinner:  "Though the mountains leave their place, and the hills be shaken, my love will never leave you" (Is 54: 10).

    Let us make straight the paths of the Lord.  And let us get ready for the meeting with this love which will reveal itself, during the night of the birth of the Lord, in the shape of a shelterless Child.  Let us remember once again that this saving love, coming to man during the night of Bethlehem, and revealing itself in the Cross and the Resurrection, remains incessantly written in the Church's life as the Sacrament of the Body and the Blood as nourishment of souls.

    Each time we receive this Sacrament, whenever we accept this food, we prepare the way of the Lord, we make straight his paths.  May we always have hunger and thirst for this nourishment, above all in the period of Advent!

    May we, through the Sacrament of the Body and the Blood, build the way along which God will come to us in the mystery of his majesty.

                            -- Blessed John Paul II
                                16 December 1982

Rank on rank the host of heaven
Spreads its vanguard on the way,
As the Light of light descendeth
From the realms of endless day,
That the powers of hell may vanish
As the darkness clears away.
            -- From the Liturgy of St. James (4th century)

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