Commentary on the Gospel of

Victoria Sanchez - School Teacher in Madrid

3rd Sunday of Advent -  "One is coming who will baptise you with the Holy Spirit".

What predominates in the first two readings of this Sunday: 1st Zephaniah 3,14-18 a ; and 2nd Philippians 4,4-7; is Christian joy. For the Lord is near. Christian joy comes from God and it is mysterious because it does not exclude pain and suffering, both seem to be compatible. Throughout the ages we have seen many people who have experienced great joy; they have overcome all the trials and persecutions.

Today John the Baptist preached justice and charity. These are the ways by which joy comes. We are told: "He who has two coats, let him distribute them to those who have none; and he who has food, let him do the same. And do not extort money from anyone. "There must be joy in our lives, optimism, and inner peace by sharing our goods with those who need them most.

The catechism of the Church defines charity in this way: "The works of mercy are Christian actions by which we help our neighbour in his bodily and spiritual needs. To instruct, to console, to comfort, to counsel are spiritual works of mercy, as well as to forgive. To serve out of love is the secret key to joy, for oneself and for others. 

"Rejoice, little Christian community, poor and humble, yet beautiful in my eyes, because you ardently desire my Kingdom, you thirst for justice, for peace and you do not follow the powerful of the moment, but you stand faithfully by the side of the poor, and you are not afraid of anything, but your heart is in joy" (Pope Francis on 16-12-2018).

Thank you, Lord, for filling us with your love, your mercy, your Word and your Spirit. 

(Psalm Isaiah 12: Shout for joy "How great in the midst of you is the Holy One of Israel".



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