Thursday, November 24, 2005

Pray the Sunday Readings

First Sunday of Advent, Year B
Mark 13:33-37

P. Prepare
1. Jesus presents this teaching on the Mount of Olives just before the Passion.
2. "No one knows the day nor the hour" is the preceeding verse of the Gospel.
3. Christians are to be constantly in a state of expectation of the Lord's return no matter how delayed he may seem.
4. The gospel contains a mini parable, comparing the vocation of a Christian to a "doorkeeper"...interestingly two of North America's most holy men of the last century both worked as "porters or doorkeepers": Canada's (and New England's) Blessed Andre Besset and the U.S.'s Venerable Solanus Casey...might this be interpreted as some sign that the Lord's comign is nearer now? On any account it was the "doorkeepers" one job to watch for the coming of a anyone. (one might also reflect on last Sunday's Gospel and the coming of the Lord under his many guises).
5. The doorkeeper is given "charge"...the Greek word exousia which also can mean "power"
6. What is said is underscored not to be just for the Apostles but for everyone...."Watch!"

R. Read
Read Mark 13:33-37 slowly. What strikes you as you read the selection? You might want to read it again before you go to Mass on Sunday.
A. Attend
Listen to all of the readings at Mass. How do the First Reading and Responsorial Psalm add to what the Gospel says? What speaks to you as you hear the Gospel proclaimed? What in the homily touches you or adds to what you were already thinking?
Y. Yield
How can you keep watch? Read the stories of Solanus Casey and Brother did they watch for Christ as doorkeepers in their lives? How might you celebrate this Advent season by watching more intensely for Christ?

Here is a suggestion:
Pray the Divine Office throughout the day (all seven hours) as a way of "keeping watch" for Christ both in his future Second Coming but also as he comes to you in the guise of the poor.