The Second Sunday Of Advent

second sunday advent wreathReading 1 is 40:1-5, 9-11

Comfort, give comfort to my people, says your God.
Speak tenderly to Jerusalem,
and proclaim to her that her service is at an end,
her guilt is expiated;
indeed, she has received from the hand of the LORD double for all her sins.
A voice cries out: In the desert prepare the way of the LORD!
Make straight in the wasteland a highway for our God!
Every valley shall be filled in, every mountain and hill shall be made low;
the rugged land shall be made a plain, the rough country, a broad valley.
Then the glory of the LORD shall be revealed, and all people shall see it together;
for the mouth of the LORD has spoken.

Go up on to a high mountain, Zion, herald of glad tidings;
cry out at the top of your voice, Jerusalem, herald of good news!
Fear not to cry out and say to the cities of Judah: Here is your God!
Here comes with power the Lord GOD, who rules by his strong arm;
here is his reward with him, his recompense before him.
Like a shepherd he feeds his flock;
in his arms he gathers the lambs, carrying them in his bosom,
and leading the ewes with care.

Commentary below is Father Robert Barron’s Advent Reflection, day 7, 2014

Advent Day 7 – Love Both Gentle and Fierce
What does God’s love look like in a world gone wrong? During Advent we prepare for the Incarnation, when Jesus reveals a God who is nothing but love. But this enfleshment takes place in the midst of a fallen, sinful world. Therefore, it will naturally appear threatening, strange, or off-putting.Consider when you are in a particularly grouchy mood, when things are not going well. Who is the most obnoxious person to have around? Someone who is in a good mood. There is no one more annoying to a grouch than the sunny optimist.If you have been stuck for two weeks in the depths of a cave, what would be most tortuous to you? Light.If you have been swinging a golf club incorrectly for many years, who is most painful to you? The teacher who compels you to change everything you’ve known and to swing in a new way. The world, on the biblical reading, is a dysfunctional family. As G.K. Chesterton put it, “We’re all in the same boat, and we’re all seasick.” Therefore in light of this disorder, when Jesus comes, he necessarily comes as a trouble-maker, as a breaker of the peace. It’s helpful to remember during Advent that there is no contradiction between God’s gentleness and God’s fierceness: they are both expressions of his love. They both emerge when love breaks into our dysfunctional world and sets it right, which is precisely what commences at Christmas.

 

Please respect the nature and intent of this post. If you are not Christian, pass by, no comment necessary. Absolutely no tolerance will be given to any political or off topic posts. Future posts will be closed to comments or eliminated if we can’t all be respectful. Thank you, Menagerie

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54 Responses to The Second Sunday Of Advent

  1. MaryfromMarin says:

    Gaudete, gaudete, Christus est natus
    Ex Maria virgine, gaudete
    Gaudete, gaudete, Christus est natus
    Ex Maria virgine, gaudete…

    Liked by 9 people

    • sejmon says:

      MaryfromMarin …Thank you.Beautiful singing..

      Liked by 3 people

    • Carrie2 says:

      MaryfromMarin, I miss so many of our songs not again in Latin which always had a great and deep effect for both Christmas and Easter. Of course, many of our English songs for the Christmas season are beautiful as well. Love the candles, flowers and songs to keep me in the mood. House now sparkling clean, cookies today and tomorrow and sangria made and I can relax days before Christmas and enjoy the happiness of Christmas.

      Liked by 2 people

    • auntiefran413 says:

      Is there any sound so pure as that of a young boys’ choir? Thank you, MaryfromMarin!

      Like

    • Somewhere in Dixie says:

      Gaudete Sunday is the Third Sunday of Advent. For those of you not familiar with classical music, the first part of Handel’s Messiah is comprised of texts from the prophet Isaeah and the text that is read all the Sundays of Advent. Beautiful.

      Like

  2. Amen.

    I’m so thankful for these posts. I wish a blessed Advent to you all.

    Liked by 27 people

  3. Come Lord Jesus, Come.
    Our rough and broken world has lost it’s way and we need Your help.

    Liked by 16 people

  4. wolfmoon1776 says:

    “It’s helpful to remember during Advent that there is no contradiction between God’s gentleness and God’s fierceness: they are both expressions of his love.”

    Such a great point!

    Thanks for this message, Menagerie!

    Liked by 20 people

  5. David says:

    Hi my American friends. I am Israeli and a Trump supporter. I sometimes share with you on politics from another point of view. At this occasion I would like to share a video about the power of forgiveness. I hope you will find it empowering. By the way in the content of this video I will mention that my mother was an Aushwitz survivor and spent some years ther at the age of 16. It had a powerful effect on my family’s life so this video was also valuable for me.

    Liked by 9 people

    • POP says:

      The lesson of Aushwitz seems to be something like “if a political party says it wants to kill you, believe them.”

      Aushwitz happened to unarmed citizens, that’s not Israel today.
      Watch those Iranian scumbags, they say each week they want to kill you all.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Menagerie says:

        SEE note above. If this post becomes political I will trash it and discontinue further Advent posts.

        Surely we can have one post a week free of rants and politics.

        Liked by 8 people

        • sejmon says:

          Menagerie…..agree with you ….NO ANY KIND OF POLITICS…PLEASE. THIS IS ADVENT RESPECT IT…..

          Liked by 3 people

        • MaineCoon says:

          Menagerie, Thank you for stating what would have been obvious.

          Having been to Israel, Yad Vashem, the Holocaust, is the most horrific, pure evil event in the history of mankind and is NOT comparable to anything.

          Some survivors forgave, much like Corrie Ten Boom, and this twin. — both a testimony.

          As David said, forgiveness is powerful. May we espepcially forgive those we love during Christmas and Hanukkah.

          Liked by 3 people

          • Carrie2 says:

            David, and I never forget my father and his parents and siblings were able to escape the pogrom in Russia and what Jews were suffering there. Many do not know about the pogrom in Russia unfortunately. My father came as refuge to America and ever after a firm American!

            Like

            • MaineCoon says:

              So true many do not know of the Russian pogroms which were atrocious . If my memory serves me, it was only in somewhat recent years that Jews could leave Russia and immigrate to Israel, their homeland. The atrocities in Russia were horrendous.

              Praise G-d your family escaped.

              The scars will be borne for many generations.

              Never again.

              I thank God that President Trump is honoring Israel and will assist in Israel’s protection in ways we will never know.

              Like

        • The Demon Slick says:

          I agree, but the Fathers comments seem to draw parrallells that it’s natural for people to react to.
          God Bless, and Merry Christmas.

          Like

    • julegate says:

      Hi David, I have heard her before. Here is another story of forgiveness. I do not know if you would have seen this picture from the Vietnam War but it is iconic. This young girl also found forgiveness for her enemies in Jesus Christ:

      http://www.cnn.com/2015/06/22/world/kim-phuc-where-is-she-now/index.html

      Liked by 1 person

    • annilinn says:

      David…this was a most inspiring video. Eva’s simply told story, moved me to tears and prayers. Thank you and God bless.

      Liked by 1 person

    • marywilbur says:

      Thank God Almighty, free at last!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Carrie2 says:

      David, I had seen and heard her before. I now have my husband writing his life and memories under Hitler and Stalin and how seeing so much hunger and devastation under both still bothers him. I am hoping by writing all this down will soothe his mind and allow him better rest and memories being erased and gone.

      Like

    • auntiefran413 says:

      Thank you, David. Menagerie mentioned the God of Gentleness and Fierceness. Sinner that I am, I must also remember the God of Forgiveness. ^Yours is a wonderful video! Your mother is a wonderful woman…to be able to share this.

      Like

  6. Donna in Oregon says:

    Advent Day 07: The Meaning Is In The Waiting …

    There is within us a fundamental dis-ease, an unquenchable fire that renders us incapable, in this life, of ever coming to full peace. This desire lies at the centre of our lives, in the marrow of our bones, and in the deep recesses of the soul. We are not easeful human beings who occasionally get restless, serene persons who once in a while are obsessed by desire. The reverse is true. We are driven persons, forever obsessed, congenitally dis-eased, living lives, as Thoreau once suggested, of quiet desperation, only occasionally experiencing peace. Desire is the straw that stirs the drink …

    Spirituality is, ultimately, about what we do with that desire. What we do with our longings, both in terms of handling the pain and the hope they bring us, that is our spirituality. Thus when Plato says that we are on fire because our souls come from beyond and that beyond is, through the longing and hope that its fire creates in us, trying to draw us back toward itself, he is laying out the broad outlines for a spirituality. Likewise for Augustine says: ‘You have made us for yourself, Lord, and our hearts are restless until they rest in you.’ Spirituality is about what we do with our unrest.
    — Ronald Rolheiser from The Holy Longing

    Liked by 7 people

    • farmhand1927 says:

      Donna, thank you for your beautiful comment and thank you for sharing the Augustine quote. If we could keep that thought in front of our eyes daily, we all could be stronger in our faith. The Lord has plans for us, plans to give us hope and a future.

      This Advent season I must find the words to comfort a relative of mine as she copes with the sudden loss of her husband a week after Thanksgiving. I know the hole in her heart, the longing, the questions offered up in prayer: Why? What good possibly can come of this tragedy, Lord? Why now, during this joyous time of year?

      The Christmas season is both a difficult and renewing time of year to give up a loved one. Four years ago this day, I was wrapping gifts for a new baby boy expected in our family in late January. His life on Earth never went beyond his mother’s womb. In a few days we’ll remember both his birthday and his day of being called back home to of God’s Kingdom. In my years, I had survived many heartaches and losses but none prepared me for the unspeakable grief of watching his dear parents sign both birth and death certificates for the baby son they had prayed 10 years for.

      Jesus taught that once we’ve gone through a difficult time, a time of cleansing and growing nearer to Him via the tribulation route, we are to help others suffering through similar circumstances.

      So, as another in my family copes with a heart wrenching loss at this glorious, joyful time of year, I need to search Scripture, pray for inspiration and somehow find words to send in a note to someone I hold dear who is many miles from me. So far, all I can think of to write is that in spite of her bitter burden now, to remember our Father sent the Precious Baby Jesus to bear our sins and grief. That He gives us the gift of the Spirit who carries our prayers to The Throne and comforts us in due time. A Heavenly home for all eternity awaits the believer in Christ. While there is weeping in this night we call life, there is joy in the morning when we soar to the world beyond.

      Wishing all my Christian friends here an Advent Sunday of peaceful reflection, unwavering hope and trust in the life to come and a day of enjoyment, joy and rest with those you hold most dear. For those still in darkness, the Lord created you in His image, He loves you and yearns for you. He sent His only begotten Son for you, too.

      O come, O come, Emanuel. We are preparing our hearts for You.

      Liked by 6 people

      • Menagerie says:

        I’m praying for you and your family. We always hope for just the right words at times like this, but when people are suffering, many times the right words are just the sincere, loving, and prayer filled words of concern we are able to offer.

        Liked by 4 people

      • georgiafl says:

        “These things I have spoken unto you, that in Me, you might have peace…
        In the world, you will have tribulation (sorrow, loss, injury, pain, death)
        But be of good cheer (encouraged, strengthened, comforted)
        For I have overcome the world.” John 16:33

        “3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, 4 who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.”

        2 Corinthians 1:3-4

        I can attest to the veracity and efficacy of these verses and to the power of the Word of God to keep these promises and deliver on them to the fullest!

        Liked by 3 people

        • georgiafl says:

          Here are two more verses that upheld me in a time of great loss:

          “I can do all things through Christ, who strengthens me.” Philippians 4:13

          Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, Yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.’ Isaiah 41:10

          Liked by 2 people

  7. Big Bruce says:

    “Amazing grace how sweet that sound that saved wretch like me, I once was lost but now am found was blind but now I see.” I have been a Christian for 30 years and I am still amazed that God loves me and chose to open my heart to the good news of Jesus Christ, the gift of forgiveness and legal standing as an adopted child of the King. I attended a Japanese Baptist Church this morning (with my Japanese wife) the sermon was entirely in Japanese so I understand not a word but just prayed and meditated on what a blessing it is to be saved and loved by God.
    I am grateful for the balance in this wonder website: truth, hope, insight, righteous anger, humor, etc. There are so many beautiful Americans fighting the good fight to make the world a better place yet still have their hope in an eternity of bliss with their Heavenly Fathet. God’s blessings on you.

    Liked by 9 people

  8. shallbe4 says:

    God Bless that lovely lady. She understands something that the Leftists will never come to terms with. When we forgive we can move on with our lives.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Menagerie says:

      One thing I have been thinking a lot about lately. Sometimes when we forgive, we draw back the sinner to God. Many times when we humans fail, and hurt others, especially those we love, the real chance for the redemptive love of Christ is presented in what happens after.

      A hand extended in love and forgiveness can snatch back a soul from the bowels of hell. It can turn a life around, for both parties. When you have committed a great wrong, it’s very easy to keep falling into sin when you have no hope. Forgiveness gives hope. Without hope we cannot change.

      Obviously my example is representative of a more personal sin and injury than this woman suffered in a concentration camp, and is not the same at all. But the story made me think.

      Forgiveness is participation in the attempt to save another soul. It is true evangelization.

      Liked by 11 people

      • Kristin says:

        Yes. I have to forgive too. Not an easy process. But I will get there.
        Thank you for this page today. It’s good to come here.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Peg_C the Deplorable says:

        Thank you – this is so very true. The kids are evangelicals and they practice and teach this daily. I’m not, and I don’t, and I need to. I find some crimes (including one against our family) just unforgivable. This is one of my failings. Living in a state of Grace is so difficult for some of us.

        The Gaudete version above is lovely. I first heard it on a 1972 Steeleye Span LP and played the life out of this song and that album.

        Liked by 2 people

      • Thank you for your beautiful words Menagerie! They were exactly what the LORD knew I needed to hear this morning. I have a beloved family member who has hurt me deeply and I am both sad and angry. Reading your comment though convicted me of the need to forgive, as in doing so, it may be the catalyst that draws him back to God…Blessings to you and yours this Advent season!

        Liked by 1 person

      • Sunshine says:

        Forgiveness is easy once you first feel the immediate comfort it brings you.
        God handles retribution, it is not up to us. And retribution, there always is.

        I cannot imagine our world being more dysfunctional than it is today. It is the result of ever-increasing atheism. We’ve hit rock-bottom when our own children are taught hate, intolerance, and even socially-engineered as to question their own gender.

        Retribution is on the way and we live in interesting times.
        NOTE: Thank you for Advent Day 7 – Love Both Gentle and Fierce

        Liked by 1 person

  9. David Goodspeed says:

    From one sinful grouch to another
    Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah and New year!!!!!😁😁😁

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Minnie says:

    Advent is a time for preparation of the birth of our Lord, Jesus Christ, He of pure love ❤️🙏

    I hesitated posting here today. This is a difficult time of year for many, including myself.

    While there is much to be thankful for, often our mere mortal world inflicts itself upon us and drains us of gratitude and recognition of the love and acceptance we receive as children of God.

    Thank you, menagerie, for reminding us that we are strong through His unyielding love and acceptance.

    Dark moments, some that can be identified and some that remain a mystery, will pass but His love is enduring.

    My faith is strong and often tested. I will summon the strength to get through the doubt and fear (this too shall pass) and remember to Whom I belong, He who accepts me despite my faults. I am a daughter of the One True King, the Most High God.

    God bless all Treepers and their loved ones. May we remember and emulate His power of love and forgiveness which surround us, always.

    🙏❤️🙏

    Liked by 2 people

  11. kirkreport says:

    All thanks to God for sending his son.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. marywilbur says:

    In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

    St. Michael the Archangel defend us in battle.
    Be our defense against the wickedness and snares of the Devil.
    May God rebuke him, we humbly pray,
    and do thou, O Prince of the heavenly hosts, by the power of God,
    thrust into hell Satan, and all the evil spirits,
    who prowl about the world seeking the ruin of souls. Amen.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Mariposa323 says:

      While I agree that politics should be avoided , we cannot ignore that the birthplace of Christ is under siege . The last of the Christian communities since the time of Jesus are leaving . They are caught between the Muslim hate and the Israelis relentlessly barricading them in and encroaching daily on their ancestral lands . Please pray for our Christian brethren in Bethlehem . The following video is a film made ( abridged ) to show the reality they are living . There was once a time when Bethlehem was the place where all people of goodwill could come to adore the place where the Star of Bethlehem gave such hope to mankind . No more . With the last of the Christian families leaving who are the keepers of the hope and the Truth , how can there be peace ?

      Liked by 2 people

    • Minnie says:

      As it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be, world without end, Amen🙏

      Thank you, Mary, Saint Michael holds a very dear spot in the hearts of myself and my sons ❤️

      Liked by 2 people

  13. kinthenorthwest says:

    Here is one of the songs I use on my Christmas CD
    Lets Keep Christmas in our hearts all year round.
    May the spirit of Christmas always be in your heart.

    Like

  14. WS6 says:

    Having prayed the Catholic Church’s Office of Readings early this morning, I later noted during Mass that the Second Reading from the Office corresponded fittingly with the previously cited First Reading of the Mass which initiated this thread:

    From commentary on Isaiah by Eusebius of Caesarea, bishop

    (The voice in the wilderness)

    The voice of one crying in the wilderness: Prepare the way of the Lord, make straight the paths of our God. The prophecy makes clear that it is to be fulfilled, not in Jerusalem but in the wilderness: it is there that the glory of the Lord is to appear, and God’s salvation is to be made known to all mankind.

    It was in the wilderness that God’s saving presence was proclaimed by John the Baptist, and there that God’s salvation was seen. The words of this prophecy were fulfilled when Christ and his glory were made manifest to all: after his baptism the heavens opened, and the Holy Spirit in the form of a dove rested on him, and the Father’s voice was heard, bearing witness to the Son: This is my beloved Son, listen to him.

    The prophecy meant that God was to come to a deserted place, inaccessible from the beginning. None of the pagans had any knowledge of God, since his holy servants and prophets were kept from approaching them. The voice commands that a way be prepared for the Word of God: the rough and trackless ground is to be made level, so that our God may find a highway when he comes. Prepare the way of the Lord: the way is the preaching of the Gospel, the new message of consolation, ready to bring to all mankind the knowledge of God’s saving power.

    Climb on a high mountain, bearer of good news to Zion. Lift up your voice in strength, bearer of good news to Jerusalem. These words harmonize very well with the meaning of what has gone before. They refer opportunely to the evangelists and proclaim the coming of God to men, after speaking of the voice crying in the wilderness. Mention of the evangelists suitably follows the prophecy on John the Baptist.

    What does Zion mean if not the city previously called Jerusalem? This is the mountain referred to in that passage from Scripture: Here is mount Zion, where you dwelt. The Apostle says: You have come to mount Zion. Does not this refer to the company of the apostles, chosen from the former people of the circumcision?

    This is the Zion, the Jerusalem, that received God’s salvation. It stands aloft on the mountain of God, that is, it is raised high on the only-begotten Word of God. It is commanded to climb the high mountain and announce the word of salvation. Who is the bearer of the good news but the company of the evangelists? What does it mean to bear the good news but to preach to all nations, but first of all to the cities of Judah, the coming of Christ on earth?

    (Second Reading, Office of Readings, Liturgy of the Hours, Second Sunday of Advent)

    Liked by 3 people

  15. Brant says:

    One of my favorite season traditions was listening to the record of Amahl and the Night Visitors. Awesome if you’ve never heard of it.

    Like

  16. jesus bortoni says:

    To all who read this all I can say is AMEN, and Merry Christmas to all. HE brings Good News.

    Like

  17. Second sunday of Advent

    Like

  18. jeans2nd says:

    Love, gentle and fierce, and the power of forgiveness.

    Sometimes, the hardest person in the world to forgive is yourself. When you have wronged God and God alone, and only He and you know.
    How to forgive one’s self?

    God forgave you – if you asked, that is.
    Who are you to love less fierce and less gentle than God Himself?
    Who keeps you having the mind of guilty person? Not God. It is not He who is keeping you having a guilty mind.
    Satan does things like that, though.

    Love fierce enough and gentle enough to forgive yourself. If you can do that, loving everyone else is a piece of cake.

    Thank you, Menagerie, for these posts. They are always needed and appreciated.

    Like

    • POP says:

      Gentle Christians often seem to confuse Forgiveness and Justice.
      Forgiveness may or may not come, but it comes after Justice not INSTEAD of Justice.
      Merry Christmas all.

      Like

  19. Carol Maddox says:

    Thank you for speaking God’s truth!

    Like

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