The first reading for the Mass of Guadete Sunday, the 3rd Sunday of Advent comes from the prophet Isaiah. It is full of hope and promise.
The spirit of the Lord has been given to me,
for the Lord has anointed me.
He has sent me to bring good news to the poor,
to bind up hearts that are broken;
to proclaim liberty to captives,
freedom to those in prison;
to proclaim a year of favour from the Lord.
‘I exult for joy in the Lord,
my soul rejoices in my God,
for he has clothed me in the garments of salvation,
he has wrapped me in the cloak of integrity,
like a bridegroom wearing his wreath,
like a bride adorned in her jewels.
‘For as the earth makes fresh things grow,
as a garden makes seeds spring up,
so will the Lord make both integrity and praise
spring up in the sight of the nations.’
In Luke’s Gospel we find these words on the lips of Jesus himself. He finds them expressive of his mission and ministry to us.
When we know ourselves poor; when our hearts are broken; when we are captive to sin or other circumstances, our liberty and freedom compromised – we need to know that he is sent to us, and that he is faithful. He is with us and for us.
In our turn we are sent to continue his ministry of salvation and love.
- Where this day might you share love in his name?
Photograph of morning frost and mist at St Cuthman’s, Sussex. (c) 2002, Allen Morris.