Dear Parish Family,
It is hard to believe but it is already the First Sunday of Advent! I need to admit that being from Colombia, I don’t look forward to winter. But I do look forward to Christmas! Christmas for me is the beauty of the liturgy, music, novenas, gatherings, friendship and food. Every celebration which we are a part of, is pointing toward the great mystery of Christmas; the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ into this world. It is a very special time that, in fact, mother Church invites us to make a journey of four Sundays before the celebration of the Nativity.
December could become a very busy time for many of us. It is the time in which we go out shopping. It has become a tradition in our families in which we gather to exchange Christmas gifts and enjoy a meal. It is also the time in which we face a very aggressive market. We could become consumers of many things, offered by a market which we really don’t need. Let us be prudent and wise as we go shopping. We also want to be good stewards with our incomes, even during this holyday season.
Don’t let the busyness of December make you miss the reason for Advent. It is about preparing ourselves to celebrate the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. It is about the commemoration of that great historical event, God becoming a human being. Therefore, brothers and sisters, I urge you to also take time for the sacraments of Confession and Holy Eucharist. Despite the chilly weather out there, St. Patrick is always a warm place to come and celebrate Advent and Christmas. St. Patrick is your extended family; come and celebrate with us. It is also a time to extend an invitation to our friends to join us for Advent and Christmas.
May the hope of Advent become a reality for you with the coming of baby Jesus on Christmas Day.
Rev. Johnson Lopez
Father Lopez is Pastor of Saint Patrick Catholic Church in Rochelle, IL.