Tuesday, December 17, 2019

Catholic 772 : Fourth Sunday of Advent. Year A - Sunday, December 22, 2019

Homily Fourth Sunday of Advent. Year A - Sunday, December 22, 2019

First Reading: Isaiah 7:10-14

Psalm: Ps 23:1-6. "Let the Lord enter, he is king of glory."

Second Reading: Romans 1:1-7

Alleluia, alleluia! The virgin will give birth to a son; his name will be Emmanuel: God-is-with-us. Alleluia!
Gospel: Matthew 1:18-24

Pietro Annigoni's Saint Joseph and Christ in the Workshop. In Basilica di San Lorenzo, Florence, Italy. Photo By Zvonimir Atletic. Licensed Shutterstock photo ID: 1417111835. FLORENCE, ITALY - JANUARY 11, 2019:
Please listen to my audio recordings of the readings, prayers and reflections for the Fourth Sunday of Advent. Year A - Sunday, December 22, 2019, by clicking this link here:   https://soundcloud.com/user-633212303/advent-4a-faith-hope-and-love-ep-194/s-jcs0P  (EPISODE:  194)
Our time of Advent waiting is almost over. The excitement and the beauty of this Christmas Feast is so close, only a couple of days away, now.

Today we hear that superb account of the annunciation of the Angel to Mary.  When the lord breaks the news to this humble and loving lady that Gods promises to a long-awaiting and hope-filled world are being fulfilled in her.  God has entered human history in a definitive and miraculous way.  And through "God with us," we are saved.

It puts me in mind of the words of this hymn:

Suggested tune: Bishopthorpe or St Flavian tre: CM

The King shall come when morning dawns,
And light triumphant breaks;

 When beauty gilds the eastern hills,
And life to joy awakes.

0 brighter than that glorious morn
Shall this fair morning be,

When Christ, our King, in beauty comes, 
And we his face shall see.

The King shall come when morning dawns,
And earth's dark night is past;

 0 haste the rising of that morn,
The day that ever shall last.

(P.339,  Magnificat DEC 2019: vol 10; no.2). 

Our God has a very long memory and a very good memory. And Our God is faithful. He keeps his promises.

Something foretold long ago. Something promised by Our God more than 700 years before. Is now being fulfilled, just as God said.  It is a reminder to us that God thinks in many hundreds of years. God has the whole picture, whilst we individually only have a glimpse of a small part of it. But God has all the time in the world to ensure that what he promised will be fulfilled at the perfect time.

When we stick with God, we are in very good hands.

"In Matthew's version …, an unnamed angel speaks to Joseph in a dream. …Leaving the angel unnamed redirects the reader's attention in two ways. First, attention is turned away from the person of the angel to his mission: he is a messenger doing God's bidding. In this, he is a model of what Joseph himself should be: an obedient servant. Second, the anonymity of the angel highlights the role of Joseph. … In Matthew's genealogy, Jesus is the 'son of David' (1:1) whose lineage is traced through Joseph. (Also), Matthew presents the husband of Mary in terms that recall the story of the patriarch Joseph (Genesis 37 - 50) who receives his messages from God through dreams and who rescues his family by bringing them to Egypt (Genesis 45:19 - 46:6) - …  Joseph is the righteous, obedient, and compassionate protector of his wife and her child. Joseph is a wonderful model of discipleship for us. He is humble, honest, quick to respond when asked, and is 'all about' God's priorities and vision, not his own. He is happy to be the Lord's humble and loyal servant and stay in the background to what God is achieving. Nevertheless, his cooperation, along with his blessed wife, Mary, allows God to do great and wonderful things through them.

The significance of the Child is indicated by his two names. He is 'Emmanuel.' (This) indicates WHAT Jesus is doing: He is 'God (who is come down from heaven to make his home with us.' It (also) shows that Jesus is the fulfilling the ancient prophecy of Isaiah 7:14, (our First Reading); and so God, indeed, is the one who is utterly faithful to His promises. The second name indicates WHO Jesus is: 'Jesus' means 'Saviour,' for 'he is the one who will save his people from their sins' (2:21). #"

Joseph is described quite deliberately, in this weekend's Gospel, as a "righteous man." We have lost the full technical meaning of this word. This really means that he was a man who always strove to do what was right. Not just the dead-letter of the law, but the Spirit and meaning of the law, so that whatever he did would be the right thing to do, in God's eyes and for the good of others... So…. He was a man open to the Spirit….

When he heard that Mary was with child, and not from him, he obviously did not initially understand what was happening. This was completely out of the ordinary. He clearly did not respond with outrage or immediately demand that the letter of the law be followed in this situation, because he must have known and loved Mary very much, and must have known intuitively that there must be some kind of explanation for this situation, no matter how bewildering. And, so he did not act rashly or imprudently.  We are told that he carefully considered what he should do that would be best for Mary and for him and for everyone in all circumstances. He is an inspiration of how we Christians ought to respond to the many surprises, confusions and misunderstandings in life – that is, not rushing to judgement, not overreacting but rather, lovingly, prayerfully considering, with a thoughtful, reflective mind, what is truly in the best interests of all parties concerned, especially those most vulnerable.  What had occurred was so enormous he could not really comprehend. And of course, when he got more information when the Angel appeared in a dream and explained that this was all happening because of God's actions. He realised that God wanted to include his humble, lowly self into God's plan. God wanted Joseph to be the step-father of the Lord…. Joseph immediately, faithfully (and righteously) did all that was necessary. He obeyed God and did God's will, even when it was all very confusing. Joseph and Mary are an enormous inspiration to us.

Inspired by Joseph and the Blessed Virgin Mary,
we, too, wait for the Lord.
May our hearts be ever alert, ready to respond immediately to what God asks of us.\

O Emmanuel,
king and lawgiver,
Desire of the nations,
Saviour of all people.

Come and set us free.

Fr Paul W. Kelly


#(Adapted by me, from the Commentary on the Fourth Week of Advent, Year A. >From "Liturgia," Subscription Electronic Resource. © Copyright Liturgy Brisbane 2019).

"The righteous person's dilemma," by Alice Camille. Reflection: From: 19 Dec 2010 - Fourth Sunday of Advent, Cycle A. From Prepare the Word resource: TrueQuest Communications, LLC. All rights reserved.


Archive of homilies and reflections:  http://homilycatholic.blogspot.com.au
To contact Fr. Paul, please email:  paulwkelly68@gmail.com

To listen to my weekly homily audio podcast, please click this link here.
NB - It is often a week or so Ahead:  https://soundcloud.com/user-633212303/tracks

You are welcome to subscribe to Fr Paul's homily mail-out by sending an email to this address: paulkellyreflections+subscribe@googlegroups.com

Further information relating to the audio productions linked to this Blog:
"Faith, Hope and Love, A time of Christian worship and reflection"  - Led by Rev Paul W. Kelly
Texts used in this programme are for the purposes of worship and prayer for listeners wherever you are.
Prayers and chants are taken from the English Translation of the Roman Missal, edition three, © 2010, The International Commission on English in the liturgy.
Scriptures are from the New Revised Standard Version: © 1989,  by the national council of Churches of Christ, USA. , //adaptations to conform with Catholic liturgical norms, © 2009, by the same.

 [{selected psalms } - ***Psalm verses are (also) taken from "The Psalms: A New Translation" ©1963, The Grail (England), published by Collins.. **]

Prayers of the Faithful are adapted from Robert Borg's 1993 book " Together we pray". Published in Sydney Australia By  E.J. Dwyer. (out of print).

"Faith, Hope and Love" theme Hymn:  Words, based on 1 Corinthians 13:1-13, set to original music © 1996 by Paul W. Kelly.

For more details please visit http://homilycatholic.blogspot.com.au/
Contact us at paulwkelly68@gmail.com

Production by KER.

May God bless and keep you.

Fourth Sunday of Advent. Year A
(Sunday, December 22, 2019)

(EPISODE: 194)

The Lord be with you.
{{May God's Spirit of Counsel and Fortitude abide in you. }}



In the Name of the Father (+) and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

The Lord be with you.

· We continue on our Advent journey. We now light the fourth Advent Candle. The "Angel's Candle," reminding us of the message of the angels: "Peace on earth, to people of goodwill.

The Presider lights the fourth candle

O Rising Sun, you are the splendour of eternal light and the sun of justice. O come and enlighten those who yearn for you. Lord Have mercy.

O King of all, Come and save humanity, whom you formed from the clay. Christ Have mercy.

O Immanuel, Lord our God, Come and save us. Lord Have mercy.


(no Gloria in Advent)


Pour forth, we beseech you, O Lord, your grace into our hearts, that we, to whom the Incarnation of Christ your Son
was made known by the message of an Angel, may by his Passion and Cross be brought to the glory of his Resurrection. Who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever.


Prayer after Communion

Having received this pledge of eternal redemption,
we pray, almighty God,
that, as the feast day of our salvation draws ever nearer,
so we may press forward all the more eagerly
to the worthy celebration of the mystery of your Son's Nativity.
Who lives and reigns forever and ever.


Memorial Acclamation

2. When we eat this Bread and drink this Cup, we proclaim your Death, O Lord, until you come again.


Advent 2

Euch prayer III

Communion side.  pwk:  LH
{thanks everyone. And may God sustain you with his grace and love. }

Go forth, the Mass is ended.

No comments: