Every day, we need to go to our quiet place...

Today's Scriptural Meditation Readings:

December 18, A.D. 2004

Jeremiah 23:5-8
Psalm 72:1,12-13,18-19
Matthew 1:18-24 O Come,
Leader of ancient Israel,
giver of the Law to Moses on Sinai:
rescue us with your mighty power!

A brief reflection on today's Scripture passages:

Advent is all about waiting. Waiting for Jesus to transform the ordinary into ecstasy. It's so easy to describe the routine in our lives, and so difficult to put into words what exactly it is that we're waiting for, something to change the drudgery of every day living.

It looks like a desire for escape. But to escape deadness and despair, hopelessness and evil, is surely a good sort of escape. It is escape into the freedom to be what we're supposed to be. And if we can't expect something wonderful to happen at Christmas, then we've lost our yearning for God. As we grow older, it's natural to tone down our expectations. We so desire to retreat from yet another experience of disappointment. And yet, if we lose our expectation that something wonderful will happen spiritually at the great feastdays of the Church, then we'll miss the special favors that God is prepared to give in His own time.

This year which has witnessed such shocking world events, such extraordinary horrors, might just be God's time for special graces at Christmas 2004. In these last Advent days of waiting, surely it is in order to beg God for special signs of his love, another Incarnation into our minds and hearts that will fill us with joy and courage, holiness and hope.

Come, Lord Jesus, and set us on fire with love. Give us courage to live as your servants. Give us the grace of being transformed -- and in that joy, we promise to live as light-bearers and heralds of your promises,

Come, Lord Jesus, Do Not Delay!

- Msgr. Paul E. Whitmore

Lives of the saints:

Saturday of the Third Week of Advent

Full Scripture text from today's Liturgy of the Word:


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