Pastor’s Weekly Message 12-12-21

Dear Friend of Carmel Mission,
Today we celebrate Gaudete Sunday, and we are encouraged to be joyful, to “rejoice in the Lord always”, as St. Paul says in the letter to the Philippians.  (Philippians 4:4). In the first reading the prophet Zephaniah calls us to rejoice because not only is the Lord is our midst, He has won the day for us and removed all judgment against us. The psalm declares confidence and security can be found in the Lord. In the Gospel John the Baptist, in his typically iconoclastic way, proclaims the good news of social justice. A just society is within our reach, and not through drastic measures but through the practical care of each individual. All of our readings, our rose vestments, and the ever approaching feast of Christmas make a case for jubilation.
This is the season of  joy, but what if we are not feeling joyful? What if we are experiencing some sadness, missing a loved one who has passed, grappling with a painful family estrangement, struggling financially, feeling lonely or inadequate? The season of joy can all too easily become the season of stress and anxiety. Still, St. Paul says we should, “rejoice in the Lord, always.”
This Advent season at Carmel Mission we are following the example of our Savior, Jesus Christ, and our Blessed Mother, in saying, “I am for you.” The just society that John the Baptist preaches is not only concerned with the physical needs of its members, but also their mental, spiritual and emotional health. Our brothers and sisters are in need of our compassion, our understanding and our support in ways large and small. If someone is struggling just hearing us say, “I am for you,” can make all the difference. The God who loves us beyond measure is always with us, in joy and in sadness, saying, “I am for you, evermore.” That indeed is cause for rejoicing.
I wish you and your loved ones continued Advent blessings of good health, new hope and great joy,

Fr. Paul

Please take a moment to read our Carmel Mission Weekly Bulletin.

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