Readings: Third Sunday of Advent (B)

First Reading

First Reading: Isaiah 61:1-2,10-11

The Spirit of the Lord Yahweh is upon me,
because Yahweh has anointed me
to bring good news to the poor.
He has sent me to bind up broken hearts,
to proclaim liberty to the captives,
freedom to those languishing in prison;
to announce the year of Yahweh's favor
and the day of vengeance of our God;
to give comfort to all who grieve;
I rejoice greatly in Yahweh,
my soul exults for joy in my God,
for he has clothed me in the garments of his salvation,
he has covered me with the robe of his righteousness,
like a bridegroom wearing a garland,
like a bride adorned with jewels.
For as the earth brings forth its growth,
and as a garden makes seeds spring up,
so will the Lord Yahweh make justice and praise
spring up in the sight of all nations.

Responsorial Psalm

Responsorial Psalm: Lk 1:46-48, 49-50, 53-54

R./ My soul rejoices in my God.

My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord;
my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,
for he has looked upon his lowly servant.
From this day all generations will call me blessed:
R./ My soul rejoices in my God.

the Almighty has done great things for me,
and holy is his Name.
He has mercy on those who fear him
in every generation.
R./ My soul rejoices in my God.

He has filled the hungry with good things,
and the rich he has sent away empty.
He has come to the help of his servant Israel
for he has remembered his promise of mercy,
R./ My soul rejoices in my God.

Second Reading

Second Reading: 1st Thessalonians 5:16-24

Brothers and sisters:

Rejoice always, pray without ceasing and give thanks to God at every moment. This is the will of God, your vocation as Christians.

Do not quench the Spirit, do not despise the prophets' warnings. Put everything to the test and hold fast to what is good. Avoid evil, wherever it may be.

May the God of Peace make you holy and bring you to perfection. May you be completely blameless, in spirit, soul and body, till the coming of Christ Jesus, our Lord; he who called you is faithful and will do it.

Holy Gospel

Gospel Reading: John 1:6-8,19-28

A man came, sent by God;
his name was John.
He came to bear witness,
as a witness to introduce the Light
so that all might believe through him.
He was not the Light
but a witness to introduce the Light.

This was the testimony of John when the Jews sent priests and Levites to ask him, "Who are you?" John recognized the truth and did not deny it. He said, "I am not the Messiah."

And they asked him, "Then who are you? Elijah?" He answered, "I am not." They said, "Are you the Prophet?" And he answered, "No." Then they said to him, "Tell us who you are, so that we can give some answer to those who sent us. How do you see yourself?" And John said, quoting the prophet Isaiah, "I am the voice crying out in the wilderness: Make straight the way of the Lord."

Those who had been sent were Pharisees; so they put a further question to John: "Then why are you baptizing if you are not the Messiah, or Elijah, or the Prophet?" John answered, "I baptize you with water, but among you stands one whom you do not know; although he comes after me, I am not worthy to untie the strap of his sandal."

This happened in Bethabara beyond the Jordan, where John was baptizing.