Friday, December 17, 2010


Dec. 19, 2010
Fourth Sunday of Advent
Is 7,10-14 || Rom 1,1-7
Mt 1,18-24


So... this is it.

Here comes the last Sunday of the Advent Season; the last weekend before Christmas. People tend to become very busy these days. Some go to malls to buy food for the Noche Buena, or gifts for the loved ones. Others (like me) continue the Filipino tradition of the Simbang Gabi, and go to sleep through the whole day because they would still want to look fresh on Christmas. Others go to the provinces for vacation el grande, because they had already received their 13th Month Pay and Christmas Bonus. Whatever we may be doing these days, one thing is sure... we are busy.

Busy for what? My priest-friend said in his homily, we should not be busy because it is "in"; rather, we should really know that main reason why we are having such haggard preparation: because we are excited for somebody to come, and we tend to sacrifice some of our treasure, even just for this time of the year, for that somebody coming on his way.

And that somebody is Jesus Christ. He is Emmanuel, God-with-us!

True, when Christmas Day comes, we feel such joy that we only experience once in a year, and we feel contented despite the financial crisis that we are undergoing. For us, whatever we spent is not important; what's important are the joy and blessings that's bestowed upon us, and we share with our brothers and sisters. What's important is the thought that we've prepared enough for the coming of Our Lord. And more important, through our sacrifice we experience His presence healing our every pain and completing our gaps in life. We feel that God is really with us!

We see, we really tend to have some sacrifice before we experience God in us. Though we have some hesitation, at the end we still say that we have no regrets that we did it. All these because God does not dwell in hearts of pride, but in hearts of people who give from the heart, and whose life depend on Him.

And besides, if we think that we are the only race in this world that's prone to a lot of sacrificing for Christmas, we are certainly wrong.

Sometime, 2010 years ago, somebody also sacrificed for the Messiah to come. He knows that he is living in a culture who's very conservative and patriarchal. He may take his pride and honor rather than fight for a child who's not literally his son, and so put her girlfriend to death. But he looked beyond the culture, he left behind his masculine ego, and considered that child as a blessing from up above to her girl. He sacrificed a big deal, so as to relish the God-with-us in a more personal manner.

Who is he? Nobody else but the Adoptive Father of the Savior and Patron of the Universal Church. He goes by the name... JOSEPH.

We see the image of Joseph as a silent father in the scriptures. There are no recorded words which come from him. However, his silent role is really a definitive one, for under his tutelage, Jesus grew in wisdom and favor from God and the people of Nazareth. He sacrificed in silence, as we come to see of it; never considering any ill-will for his adopted son, rather, loving him as his real son, and forming him to be a good Jewish citizen, and later, the favored Son of God the Father.

For sacrificing his earthly righteousness, he earned heavenly righteousness. Now, the Church invokes him as its patron, trusting that as he took care of the Savior in his childhood and youth, likewise, he will take care of us, his spiritual children and brothers and sisters in Christ.

Truly, Joseph is considered among the images of Advent, next to Mary and John the baptist. Like the two latter figures, Joseph also waited in holy anticipation for the coming of the Messiah. Though silent, his actions speak very much of the sacrifice which he endured for the coming of the Redeemer. And at the end of it, he also rejoiced in its coming, and further, he was blessed to see the Messiah face-to-face, to hold, care and love him, and to form him into a righteous man.

As we light the fourth candle in the wreath, the Candle of Love, we pray to Jesus, the Emmanuel, that like Joseph, his adoptive father, who loved him very much and cared for him despite the odds of the Jewish culture, we may continue to persevere in our sacrifice which is being done in anticipation of the coming of the Messiah, not only in Christmas, but more fittingly, in everyday of our lives. May we continually be blessed in this season of sacrifice, in all-hopes that at the each moment of our lives, we see Jesus, the Emmanuel, and at the end of our journey on Earth, we rejoice at being with him in Eternal life!


Lord Jesus, we have now come to the last Sunday of our preparation for your coming on Christmas. We pray that you continue to guide us in the coming days which lead to your birth in that lonely, yet holy stable. Wrap us in the warmth of your divine presence. Fill our empty spaces with the love that only you can provide. Bless us and all our endeavors with your divine graces.

Like Joseph, teach us to sacrifice rightly despite the odds of the world, so as to rejoice at your consolation, and at the end of our lives, we may come to see you in the glories of heaven, our ultimate goal and true home.

Maranatha! Come Lord Jesus! Amen.

Mary, our Queen and Mother, pray for us!

Joseph, Adoptive Father of the Savior, pray for us!

BïTZëëlöG_121710 :)

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