Welcome to the Salvatorian Family, which joins us this weekend at our 5 pm Saturday Mass, celebrating its Foundation Day. Fr. Francis Jordan founded the Apostolic Teaching Society in Rome on December 8, 1881. That community is now the three branches of the Salvatorian Family: religious men, religious women, and lay. St. Pius X has been Salvatorian from its inception. Please remember our Salvatorian family in your prayers and consider joining one of our three branches. Ask me or another SDS for more information.
I thank those who took advantage of our Advent reflection Tuesday evening. Hopefully, the evening will be a help to a spiritually fulfilling Advent. Another reflection will be offered at the beginning of Lent.
Our Gospel this weekend introduces us to John the Baptist and his offer of a baptism of repentance. John was pretty harsh with the Scribes and Pharisees who came to partake in his baptism. He told them having “Abraham as their father” was not enough; they had to show their repentance by their deeds.
This is a good warning to us that we have to do more than say, “Jesus is Lord.” We have to show by our deeds that we are His followers. And once again, Isaiah helps us understand what God wants: there shall be no harm or ruin on all my holy mountain. Do I lose my temper when I am driving? Do I get angry talking with others and call them names? Do I speak badly about others? Is there someone I won’t speak to? All of these are examples of how we bring discord and unhappiness into the world and they are not acceptable for followers of Jesus. We are to be preparing the way of the Lord, that is, preparing the way for his Kingdom of peace, justice, and love. In one sense, it is a return to the ideal of the Garden of Eden.
As we continue our journey through Advent, I invite us to reflect on the Baptist’s call to repentance, a call to change our lives to be more effective agents of peace and love, agents of Christ’s Kingdom. And let us support each other in prayer, as we strive to do so.