Sunday, December 04, 2016 Second Sunday of Advent Introduction
At the heart of our Advent preparation stands John the Baptist, who calls us to repent and make a new beginning. As the darkness increases we turn toward the light of Christ’s coming. For Christians he is the root of Jesse, the righteous judge who welcomes all, especially the poor and meek of the earth. We wait with hope for that day when the wolf will dwell with the lamb, and there will be no more hurt or destruction. From the Lord’s table we are sent in the spirit of John the Baptist to proclaim that in Christ the kingdom of God has come near.
First Reading: Isaiah 11:1-10
In today’s reading the prophet describes the ideal ruler who will come in the future as a green shoot springing from a dead stump (David’s royal line) of Jesse (David’s father). Gifted by the Spirit, this messiah will seek justice for the poor, and the reign of this monarch will be experienced as paradise regained.
Psalm: Psalm 72:1-7, 18-19
May the righteous flourish; let there be an abundance of peace. (Ps. 72:7)
Second Reading: Romans 15:4-13
God’s promise to include Gentiles within the circle of God’s blessed people has been fulfilled in Jesus Christ. Christians live out their unity by welcoming and encouraging each other just as Christ has welcomed them into God’s family.
Gospel: Matthew 3:1-12
Just before Jesus begins his public ministry, John the Baptist appears, calling people to mend their ways and speaking of a powerful one who is to come.