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Homilies :: Latin Rite
Wednesday of the 3rd Week of Advent Download This Homily

December 19, 2018

Wednesday of the 3rd Week of Advent

 

Judges 13:2-7, 24-25 ;

Psalm 71:3-6, 16-17;

Gospel LK 1:5-25


In the days of Herod, King of Judea, there was a priest named Zechariah of the priestly division of Abijah; his wife was from the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth. Both were righteous in the eyes of God, observing all the commandments and ordinances of the Lord blamelessly. But they had no child, because Elizabeth was barren and both were advanced in years. Once when he was serving as priest in his division's turn before God, according to the practice of the priestly service, he was chosen by lot to enter the sanctuary of the Lord to burn incense. Then, when the whole assembly of the people was praying outside at the hour of the incense offering, the angel of the Lord appeared to him, standing at the right of the altar of incense. Zechariah was troubled by what he saw, and fear came upon him. But the angel said to him, "Do not be afraid, Zechariah, because your prayer has been heard. Your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you shall name him John. And you will have joy and gladness, and many will rejoice at his birth, for he will be great in the sight of the Lord. He will drink neither wine nor strong drink. He will be filled with the Holy Spirit even from his mother's womb, and he will turn many of the children of Israel to the Lord their God. He will go before him in the spirit and power of Elijah to turn the hearts of fathers toward children and the disobedient to the understanding of the righteous, to prepare a people fit for the Lord." Then Zechariah said to the angel, "How shall I know this? For I am an old man, and my wife is advanced in years." And the angel said to him in reply, "I am Gabriel, who stand before God. I was sent to speak to you and to announce to you this good news. But now you will be speechless and unable to talk until the day these things take place, because you did not believe my words, which will be fulfilled at their proper time." Meanwhile the people were waiting for Zechariah and were amazed that he stayed so long in the sanctuary. But when he came out, he was unable to speak to them, and they realized that he had seen a vision in the sanctuary. He was gesturing to them but remained mute. Then, when his days of ministry were completed, he went home. After this time his wife Elizabeth conceived, and she went into seclusion for five months, saying, "So has the Lord done for me at a time when he has seen fit to take away my disgrace before others."


Our Mission

 

Today we are invited to reflect on the experience of these great men and women mentioned in the first reading as well as in the gospel.


In the first reading from the book of Judges, Manoah and his wife were barren and had no children. Similarly in the gospel of Luke, Zechariah and Elizabeth were also barren and childless. Although, the two couples were righteous in the eyes of God, observing all the commandments blamelessly, being childless is considered a curse for the Jew at that time even until now. However it turns into a blessing because the birth of Samson and John the Baptist were part of God’s plan to save humanity. Both Samson and Baptist had to share in the mission. This is what the angel said to Mary “ Behold Elizabeth your relative, has also conceived a son in her old age and this is the sixth month for her who is called barren, for nothing is impossible for God”.( Luke 1: 36-37)


The mission of Samson was to deliver the people of Israel from the power of the Philistines (Judges 13:5). How about John the Baptist? God assigned John the Baptist a mission to fulfill: turning many children of Israel to their Lord and preparing a people fit for the Lord. (Luke: 1; 17)


Each and every one of us also has our own mission in life as a Catholic. At this moment let us reflect and sincerely ask ourselves what mission God wants you and me to fulfill as we prepare for the coming of Jesus Christ.


I believe that we will only discover our true mission when we take time to come to the Holy Eucharist, listen to the Word of God and let His Word and Body transform us. Then and only then, will we be able to love and live out our mission in our daily life, in the family, and the work place as well. How? By sharing with others what we have felt and experienced in the holy Eucharist not only by words but first and foremost by our life testimony of loving and giving. This is our mission- to know Christ and to make Him known to others in our own way and in our own places.


What is our mission in life?


The day of the Christmas pageant finally arrived. Kaitlin was so excited about her part. The parents were all there to watch the performance of their children. At the edge of the stage, Kaitlin sat quietly and confidently. Then the teacher began: “A long time ago, Mary and Joseph had a baby and they named him Jesus”. She continued, and when Jesus was born, a bright star appeared over the manger”. At that cue, Kaitlin got up, picked up a large star, walked behind Mary and Joseph and held the star up high for everyone to see. When the teacher told about the shepherds coming to see the baby, the three young shepherds came forward, and Kaitlin jiggled the star up and down excitedly to show them. When the wise men responded to their cue, Kaitlin went forward a little to lead the way. Her face was as brilliant as the original star must have been. The play ended. On the way home Kaitlin said with great satisfaction, “I had the main part.” You did? Her mother questioned, wondering why she thought that. “Yes, she said, because I showed everybody how to find Jesus”.


How true!  To show others how to find Jesus, to be the light of their paths- that is the greatest role and mission we can play in life. Are we true to our mission of showing others how to find Jesus?


Fr. Martin Kuzhivelil CMI


Homilies Navchetana Apps, the first of its kind is produced and published by Navchetana Communications, Bhopal, India to assist the clergy to preach the World of God and also as a handy spiritual resource for the people of God to reflect on the daily spiritual passages at their convenience. You can download this on your Android phone from Google play and you can see the Gospel reflections of the whole year. The size of this app is just 2.5 MB. We welcome your suggestions and contributions to server you better.

May God Bless you

Fr. James M L CMI

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Homilies Navchetana is an initiative of Navchetana Communications, Bhopal, India. We have been sending the Sunday and daily homilies last four years. We are grateful to you for your cooperation and encouraging comments. Navchetana is committed to spread the Good News of Jesus Christ through modern media and performing arts. Through our Web TV, audio and video productions and stage programmes we take the Gospel message to the ends of the earth. Make a donation and be a part of this noble mission.


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