Scripture readings, reflection

By Fr. Andrew Kelly
Advent is the celebration of God entering human history.  The Scriptures seem to be about the past. But listening with an Advent faith, these old stories become the new stories of God’s coming into this present moment of history.
Take Sunday’s Gospel (Luke 3:1-6) for example.  The story begins with references to political leaders of over 2,000 years ago.
But listening with an Advent faith, the references could be to today’s political leaders. The point is that God is always eternally coming at a particular time and place.
The story says “…the word of God came to John son of Zechariah in the wilderness.”  Every Sunday the same “word” comes to the community through the proclamation and preaching of the Scriptures.
John’s “word” is just as relevant and needed today as it was then:
“John went into all the region around the Jordan, proclaiming a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins…”
Advent is a powerful, miraculous time in the life of the community.  Through the grace of God, the past becomes present as people respond by lives of conversion and reconciliation.
Even Isaiah’s prophecy becomes a present day possibility:
“…and all flesh shall see the salvation of God.”
(Father Andrew Kelly is a retired priest of the Diocese of Davenport.)

Scripture Readings for Dec. 9-16
Bar 5:1-9
Phil 1:4-6, 8-11
Lk 3:1-6
Is 35:1-10
Lk 5:17-26
Is 40:1-11
Mt 18:12-14
Zec 2:14-17 or Ps 1:1Rv 11:19a; 12:1-6a, 10ab
Lk 1:26-38 or Lk 1:39-47
Is 41:13-20
Mt 11:11-15
Is 48:17-19
Mt 11:16-19
Sir 48:1-4, 9-11
Mt 17:9a, 10-13
Zep 3:14-18a
Phil 4:4-7
Lk 3:10-18

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