4th Sunday of Advent Year A
‘His name will be Emmanuel, A name which means God-is-with-us’
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.
Our Advent time of waiting is almost ended and the excitement of Christmas celebrations begins, anticipated early by many around us. But as Christians, we wait in quiet hope for the coming of our Saviour whose birth is our reason to celebrate.
The First Reading speaks of this hope, voiced many years before Jesus is born by the prophet Isaiah; he speaks of one who will come to be Emmanuel, the God who is with us.
St Paul reminds us that the birth of Jesus is only the beginning; we will see his death and the holiness and power of his resurrection (Second Reading). This is our hope and the meaning of our faith.
The Psalm calls the disciple to holiness. The values of Jesus will be shown in the way we live our lives in purity of heart: “Let the Lord enter, he is the king of glory!”
The Gospel relates the story of Mary and Joseph before the birth of Jesus. Both are called, in different ways, to a very great trust, and to have faith in God’s promises.
As Advent draws to a close, we pray for their gift of trusting faith.