Rejoice is the word of the day. Today the tone of the season changes, or should change from a penance to a more joyful anticipation. The day of salvation is near. John the Baptist in his preaching , both tells his disciples how to prepare and prepares them to follow the Christ. He prepares them so that they might follow another, the old testament draws to a close and the new is about to begin. Lk 3:10-18 His preparation is one of repentance, and a changing of paths. His tone is also one of urgency. Though he admonishes people to change their ways, it is so that they might enter into something better. Somber to Joyful. Rejoice. Darkness to light. Zep 3:14-18a “Fear not, O Zion, be not discouraged! The LORD, your God, is in your midst,a mighty savior”
Gaudete in Domino semper: iterum dico, gaudete. Modestia vestra nota sit omnibus hominibus: Dominus enim prope est. Nihil solliciti sitis: sed in omni oratione petitiones vestræ innotescant apud Deum. Benedixisti Domine terram tuam: avertisti captivitatem Jacob.
This third Sunday of Advent, also deserves some mention of Mary. Saturday is the Feast of our Lady of Guadalupe when Mary makes her presence known in a new world. Tuesday was the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin. The week leading up to this Guadete Sunday is composed around Mary, and with her comes the first rejoicing of the Christ Child.”My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord,my spirit rejoices in God my Saviorfor he has looked with favor on his lowly servant.” My spirit rejoices. Rejoice, joy. They are the words that proclaim Christ, they are the words to describe the King. While this day might have lost some of its historical significance with the removing of the food-fasts and penitential practices of yesteryear; it is worth emphasizing the joyous nature of the Nativity. Christian Joy begins with Christ, and it is that joy Gaudete Sunday proclaims. Enough said.