Sunday, November 29, 2009

Advent

By Father Gerald McSorley

It was the last season to be added to the liturgical calendar year of the church.

Now it is the season with which we begin our liturgical year. Christmas in France and Spain observed Advent as early as the fourth century, as a period of 40 days of fasting and prayer in preparation for Christmas.

The church in Rome adopted it in the sixth century, and Pope Gregory the Great at that time reduced it to four Sundays. It is a season of hope and joyful anticipation of Christmas and also the final coming of Christ in glory.

The advent message of St. Ambrose was “Let Mary’s soul be in each of you to proclaim the greatness of the Lord”.

John Baptist and Mary are Biblical figures who help us prepare the way of the Lord during Advent.

Father Gerald McSorley is pastor of St. Bernard's Church.

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