3rd Sunday of Advent Year A

Published on 09 Dec 2019
A road through a forest

Rejoice in the Lord always; indeed the Lord is near!

O God, who see how your people faithfully await the feast of the Lord’s Nativity,

enable us, we pray, to attain the joys of so great a salvation

and to celebrate them always with solemn worship and glad rejoicing.

‘Rejoice!’ The word that begins the First Reading resounds in today’s liturgy. Isaiah wants to show us that it is in the wilderness – the place of loneliness and desolation, and every human need – where rejoicing is to be found.

It is exactly here, in the wastelands (the home of John the Baptist), where God’s promise is to be discovered.

And what is God’s promise? That he will save us (First Reading, Psalm and Second Reading) and therefore we must not lose heart. Even though we may feel we are stuck in the wild places, God is at work here.

The Gospel shows salvation explained and opened out: the blind see, the lame walk, the deaf hear and lepers are healed. Christ’s actions fulfil the words of the prophet Isaiah and, today, give us hope to face the difficulties of the world and of our day-to-day lives.

On this Gaudete (‘Rejoice’) Sunday, let’s give thanks for all that is good, and pray that we might also trust in the joyful hope of that which awaits us.

Courage! Do not be afraid. Look, your God is coming to save you.    First Reading

Come, Lord and save us!     Psalm

You have to be patient … Do not lose heart, because the Lord’s coming will be soon.     Second Reading

Happy is the one who does not lose faith in me.     Gospel

This week’s texts if you want to reflect further

Isaiah 35: 1–6, 10; Psalm 145 (146); James 5: 7–10; Matthew 11: 2–11