Second Advent Sunday in year B

Posté par diaconos le 2 décembre 2020

Deuxième dimanche de l'Avent dans l'année B dans conversion rnuoyEQ2rqXXc6eDIYl7f0ROuJk@745x379

In the desert, a voice cried out : « Prepare the way of the Lord, make his paths straight

# John the Baptist, whose birth name is Yohanan (Hebrew: יוחנן), is a major figure in Christianity and Islam. Historically, his existence is attested by a passage from Flavius Josephus, he was a Jewish preacher at the time of Jesus of Nazareth. The Gospel according to John localized the Baptist’s activity on the banks of the Jordan River and in Bethany beyond the Jordan. Jesus is said to have lived for a time in his surroundings and to have recruited his first apostles there. The Synoptic Gospels synchronise the beginning of Jesus’ activity with John’s imprisonment. The audience of this apocalyptic prophet continued to grow, to the point of provoking the reaction of Herod Antipas, who, seeing him gather his followers, feared that he might provoke a revolution. In the Synoptic Gospels, the Baptist was killed because he criticised Antipas’ marriage to Herodias. In Christianity, John the Baptist is the prophet who announced the coming of Jesus of Nazareth. He baptised him on the banks of the Jordan River, allowing some of his disciples to join him. Precursor of the Messiah, he is presented in the synoptics as sharing many traits with the prophet Elijah. He is celebrated on June 24th, which commemorates his birth, and on August 29th, the memory of his beheading.

From the Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Mark

Beginning of the Gospel of Jesus, Christ, Son of God. It is written in Isaiah, the prophet: Behold, I send my messenger before thee, to open thy way. Voice of one crying in the desert : « Prepare the way of the Lord, make straight his paths. « Then John, who was baptising, appeared in the desert. He proclaimed a baptism of conversion for the forgiveness of sins.

All Judea and all the inhabitants of Jerusalem went to him and were baptized by him in the Jordan, publicly acknowledging their sins. John was clothed in camel hair, with a leather belt around his loins; he ate locusts and wild honey. He proclaimed, « Behold, he who is stronger than I come behind me; I am not worthy to stoop down to undo the strap of his sandals. I have baptised you with water; he will baptise you in the Holy Spirit. «   (Mk 1, 1-8)

Prepare the way of the Lord

Christ will come as Lord of power and shepherd of meekness : « Behold the Lord God, he comes with power. Like a shepherd, he leads his flock ; his arm gathers the lambs and they carry them on his heart » (First reading). No doubt he still makes us wait : « The Lord is not late in keeping his promise; he waits for you, for he does not accept to let some get lost, but he wants all to have time to be converted. « (Second reading). The important thing is to prepare the way for him by changing his life.

In the desert, a voice cries out : « Prepare the way of the Lord, make his paths straight »   The Lord is coming; we must prepare a way for him. We find this image of the way throughout the Bible. Paths and roads are a vital link between people and civilisations : they enable people to communicate from one place to another and to meet each other.

This desert that needs to be transformed is the desert of people’s social and religious distress, the desert of loneliness, the desert that is also caused by the lack of respect for human dignity.

Towards the end of the year 27, John the Baptist, in the desert, proclaimed a baptism of conversion for the forgiveness of sins; he did not spare his audience. Change your behaviour completely…turn around ! You were doing this ? Now do the opposite. This evil that you were doing, stop doing it. That good you were not doing, start doing it. Change ! Change !

As Christmas approaches, we are invited to receive the Sacrament of Reconciliation for the forgiveness of our sins. From now on, let us prepare ourselves to make it a serious, adult, responsible process. And like the crowds that came to the Jordan, let us begin by acknowledging our sins, Lord open my eyes !

The coming of Jesus must be prepared for everyone. Let us begin by removing from our lives everything that is contrary to God; let us learn not to judge or condemn others, even if they have done wrong. By rejecting them, we are rejecting God’s love for them. Sometimes we denounce and accuse in the name of truth. This way of doing things is often hypocritical and, above all, it does not give the person who is the victim a chance.

Let us understand this well : Every sinner is a man that God wants to save ! True conversion must be accompanied by the witness of our life. John the Baptist announced the coming of the Lord and prepared for it. Like him, we have to roll up our sleeves to build a more just and fraternal world. But as witnesses of faith, let us never forget this word of the Gospel : « He who comes behind us, he whom we proclaim, is mightier than we. »

This Christmas preparation sends us back to others. It is a call to bear witness to our faith within our families. Let us give a religious dimension to this feast. The family Christmas celebration will only be truly successful if we prepare it in advance. No one waits until the last moment to send out invitations and prepare presents. And if we put at least as much energy into preparing for the coming of Jesus !

Deacon Michel Houyoux

Links to other Christian Web

◊ Father Hanly : click here to read the paper → 2nd Sunday of Advent, Year B
◊ Young Catholics  : click here to read the paper →  2nd Sunday in Advent – Year B (2020)

Lectio Reflection – 2nd Sunday of Advent – Luke 3:1-6

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