Sunday Scripture

I THOUGHT YOU SHOULD KNOW | Invite the child Jesus into your heart

The feast of the Birth of Jesus is perhaps the most attractive feast of the liturgical year. Children, adults and elders gaze into the manger at the "infant wrapped in swaddling clothes" and are speechless in awe and admiration.

How could an infinitely great God show more affection for fallen mankind than by becoming a helpless baby, born in a stable and placed in a manger? Normally, babies were born in the family home, surrounded by extended family, to provide support for the mother and father.

I THOUGHT YOU SHOULD KNOW | Embrace the great mystery of God’s plan

Sunday, Dec. 18, is a week from the celebration of the birth of the God-Man who comes to save the world from sin. The closer we get to this great event, the deeper we enter into the mystery of His coming in time and in our hearts.

In the first reading for the Fourth Sunday of Advent, God desires to reveal a sign of God's coming to Ahaz, but proud Ahaz refuses to ask for the sign, saying, "I will not tempt the Lord!"

I THOUGHT YOU SHOULD KNOW | Nurture your heart with a vision of the coming glory of God

On Dec. 11, the third Sunday of Advent, we celebrate "Gaudete" Sunday. The entrance antiphon exhorts us to: "Rejoice in the Lord always; again I say rejoice. Indeed, the Lord is near." The readings blend twin calls to have hope and patience.

The first reading from Isaiah celebrates the marvelous future transformation of the parched land and the desert into a land that "will bloom with abundant flowers and rejoice with joyful song." "They will see the glory of the Lord and the splendor of our God."

I THOUGHT YOU SHOULD KNOW | Repentance is a gift God offers humanity

Bishop Robert J. Hermann

The readings for the Second Sunday of Advent validate the hunger our hearts experience for a lasting peace and harmony that eludes us now. As St. Augustine said, "Our hearts are restless, until they rest in you, O Lord." God placed in our hearts a profound hunger for unity, harmony, happiness and fulfillment, and that hunger nurtures our hope for what God promises in the depths of our spirit.

I THOUGHT YOU SHOULD KNOW | We’re called to wake to the God dwelling within us

The responsorial psalm captures and simplifies the theme of the readings for the first week of Advent. We're called to walk in the "light of the Lord."

Isaiah states: "In the days to come, the mountains of the Lord's house shall be established as the highest mountain and raised above the hills." This doesn't mean Mount Zion is physically the highest mountain, rather God chose this mountain as His special dwelling place.

I THOUGHT YOU SHOULD KNOW | Devotion to Christ’s passion begets a deep love for Jesus

On Nov. 20, we celebrate the Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe. The most powerful image in the universe isn't a national flag or a coin or a monument. The most powerful image in the universe is the crucifix of Jesus Christ, the image of power over the entire created universe.

All three readings for this Sunday give a glimpse of what that power really is. In the first reading, it's the image of King David being anointed to be king over Israel. Up until now he was king of Judah, but now his reign extends to all of God's holy people in the chosen land.

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