Daily Email

Wednesday, November 25, 2020

God has visited us. The First Sunday of Advent 2020

                                                         God has visited us. 

The First Sunday of Advent 2020

www.johnpredmoresj.com | predmore.blogspot.com

predmoresj@yahoo.com | 617.510.9673

November 29, 2020

Isaiah 63:16-19, 64:2-7; Psalm 80; 1 Corinthians 1:3-9; Matthew 13:33-37



At the start of Advent, Jesus exhorts his disciples to look and to watch while waiting while Isaiah in the first reading begs to know why God remains hidden during their time of exile. Isaiah gives us helpful language to speak during times when God seems absent. He asks, “Why do you let us wander? Return for the sake of your people. Let your presence be known.” And today we say, of all times, we need you more than ever to see you and to know you are around.


We desperately want to know that God is with us and we wonder where God is in the midst of this death, sickness, and suffering, especially as we are tired of waiting. Perhaps our Thanksgiving traditions were scaled back and we fear that our Christmas gatherings will be similar. We want to be able to hug our friends again, breathe freely, enjoy a meal and a laugh at a restaurant, and we are told to continue to wait. Why God don’t you help us out?


As a priest, I have a privileged role and I get to see miracles for those who are able to come to mass. I get to see Jesus feeding us through his body, which has been broken and blessed. I see the one offering of bread transformed into his presence among us, and the more that it is broken, the more we are united. Every person who approaches the sanctuary to receive his body bears a rich story, and I wish I could hear each one, as Jesus does. As I look into each communicant’s eyes, I see the hunger, the dependence upon Christ, the knowing satisfaction that Christ is fulfilling his promise to be there for all. We say Amen as we know that in the mystery, Christ will not forget us and will fortify us with the strength that we need to carry on in faith and hope.


As each person returns to one’s seat, I get to marvel at the way we are all pulled together because it can never be an individual communion as we are fed by one loaf of bread that is inexhaustible. We return to our pews after receiving our nourishment and we know that Christ has touched our lives, and from the presider’s chair, I can see that Christ is touching each person’s live individually and personally, and he is doing it from the one loaf that is his self-offering to us, and when we exit the church, we remain connected to people we don’t even know, but our stories are intertwined and intermixed, and we form a larger whole that brings Christ happiness because we are gift to one another in ways that will unfold over time. At the same time, we belong to him and to one another. 


And so in Advent, we wait, and we realize we are not alone because Christ is still at work, still drawing us closer to him, connecting us through his food to each other. Though our waiting causes us anxiety, we can take comfort that we can never be alone as long as we are church and stay fed, and we can also take comfort that our personal experience is shared by others, and as they know our pain, our suffering is lessened, and this becomes a moment of happiness. God has visited us and will never leave us alone, and we have each other, and we will never be alone. 


Scripture for Daily Mass


First Reading:

Monday: (Romans 10) If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For one believes with the heart and so is justified, and one confesses with the mouth and so is saved.


Tuesday: (Isaiah 11) On that day, A shoot shall sprout from the stump of Jesse, and from his roots a bud shall blossom. The Spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him: a Spirit of wisdom and of understanding, A Spirit of counsel and of strength, a Spirit of knowledge and of fear of the LORD, and his delight shall be the fear of the LORD.


Wednesday: (Isaiah 25) On this mountain the LORD of hosts will provide for all peoples A feast of rich food and choice wines, juicy, rich food and pure, choice wines.
On this mountain he will destroy the veil that veils all peoples, The web that is woven over all nations; he will destroy death forever.


Thursday: (Isaiah 26) A strong city have we; he sets up walls and ramparts to protect us. Open up the gates to let in a nation that is just, one that keeps faith. A nation of firm purpose you keep in peace; in peace, for its trust in you.


Friday (Isaiah 29) But a very little while, and Lebanon shall be changed into an orchard, and the orchard be regarded as a forest! On that day the deaf shall hear the words of a book; And out of gloom and darkness, the eyes of the blind shall see.


Saturday (Isaiah 30) O people of Zion, who dwell in Jerusalem, no more will you weep; He will be gracious to you when you cry out, as soon as he hears he will answer you. The Lord will give you the bread you need and the water for which you thirst.




Monday: (Matthew 4) As Jesus was walking by the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon who is called Peter, and his brother Andrew, casting a net into the sea; they were fishermen. He said to them, “Come after me, and I will make you fishers of men.”


Tuesday: (Luke 10) I give you praise, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, for although you have hidden these things from the wise and the learned you have revealed them to the childlike. Yes, Father, such has been your gracious will. 


Wednesday (Matthew 15) Jesus walked by the Sea of Galilee, went up on the mountain, and sat down there. Great crowds came to him, having with them the lame, the blind, the deformed, the mute, and many others. They placed them at his feet, and he cured them. The crowds were amazed when they saw the mute speaking, the deformed made whole, the lame walking, and the blind able to see, and they glorified the God of Israel.


Thursday (Matthew 7) Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the Kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father in heaven. 


Friday (Matthew 9) As Jesus passed by, two blind men followed him, crying out,
“Son of David, have pity on us!” When he entered the house, the blind men approached him and Jesus said to them, “Do you believe that I can do this?”  


Saturday (Matthew 9) At the sight of the crowds, his heart was moved with pity for them because they were troubled and abandoned, like sheep without a shepherd.
Then he said to his disciples, “The harvest is abundant but the laborers are few; so ask the master of the harvest to send out laborers for his harvest.” 


Saints of the Week


November 29: Bernardo Francisco de Hoyos, S.J., religious (1711-1735) was the first and main apostle to the devotion of the Sacred Heart. He entered the novitiate in Spain at age 14 and took vows at 17. He had mystical visions of the Sacred Heart. He was ordained in January 1735 with a special dispensation because he was not old enough. A few weeks after celebrating his first mass, he contracted typhus and died on November 29th. 


November 30: Andrew, apostle (first century) was a disciple of John the Baptist and the brother of Simon Peter. Both were fishermen from Bethsaida. He became one of the first disciples of Jesus. Little is known of Andrew's preaching after the resurrection. Tradition places him in Greece while Scotland has incredible devotion to the apostle.  


December 1: Edmund Campion, S.J., (1540- 1581), Robert Southwell, S.J., (1561-1595) martyrs, were English natives and Jesuit priests at a time when Catholics were persecuted in the country. Both men acknowledge Queen Elizabeth as monarch, but they refused to renounce their Catholic faith. They are among the 40 martyrs of England and Wales. Campion was killed in 1581 and Southwell’s death was 1595.


December 3: Francis Xavier, S.J., priest (1506-1552) was a founding members of the Jesuit Order who was sent to the East Indies and Japan as a missionary. His preaching converted hundreds of thousands of converts to the faith. He died before reaching China. Xavier was a classmate of Peter Faber and Ignatius of Loyola at the University of Paris.


This Week in Jesuit History


  • Nov 29, 1773: The Jesuits of White Russia requested the Empress Catherine to allow the Letter of Suppression to be published, as it had been all over Europe. "She bade them lay aside their scruples, promising to obtain the Papal sanction for their remaining in status quo. 
  • Nov 30, 1642: The birth of Br Andrea Pozzo at Trent, who was called to Rome in 1681 to paint the flat ceiling of the church of San Ignacio so that it would look as though there were a dome above. There had been a plan for a dome but there was not money to build it. His work is still on view. 
  • Dec. 1, 1581: At Tyburn in London, Edmund Campion and Alexander Briant were martyred. 
  • Dec. 2, 1552: On the island of Sancian off the coast of China, Francis Xavier died. 
  • Dec. 3, 1563: At the Council of Trent, the Institute of the Society was approved. 
  • Dec. 4, 1870: The Roman College, appropriated by the Piedmontese government, was reopened as a Lyceum. The monogram of the Society over the main entrance was effaced. 
  • Dec. 5, 1584: By his bull Omnipotentis Dei, Pope Gregory XIII gave the title of Primaria to Our Lady's Sodality established in the Roman College in 1564, and empowered it to aggregate other similar sodalities.

No comments:

Post a Comment