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Advent 3rd Sunday,Dec.12,10,Lk.1:57-66

Advent,3rd S.,Dec.12,10

Advent.3rd S,Dec.12,10
( Lk.1:57-66)

When John XX111 was elected the Pope in 1958,many wondered what he would do as he was very advanced in age. Many thought of his papacy as a stop-gap arrangement and as a waiting time for another talented and young Pope to resume the work after the end of his reign. The question on the lips of many was “What can he do? Or what will become of him?” Such questions and doubts were in the minds of a lot of people of that period. They had no idea of the cataclysmic changes that would take place in the history of the Church because of the bold initiatives he took in calling into session the Vatican Council.

Today’s Gospel sets before us questions of a similar nature that were asked at the beginning of the history of our salvation. But they are not questions of worry or anxiety but of expectations and hopes. For the people of that time began to see miracles happening before their own very eyes. Elizabeth who was never thought of having a child became a mother at a later age in her life. Tradition had it that the son should bear the father’s name and instead the child was given the name, John, meaning God is gracious. Zechariah who became mute and deaf began to speak immediately after the naming of the child. So it is natural for them to expect to see more miracles happening in their lives through the life of John. Hence they spoke to one another about the greater things that were going to be seen in their lives: “What will this child be?”

Yes, greater things would happen. Jesus, the Christ, would appear in their lives and John would become His precursor. He would get the unique privilege of baptizing the Son of God. John would confront corruption and immorality in higher places with boldness and courage. He would have no fear in his heart to condemn the King for his adulterous actions. . His actions would be so charged with the grace of God that he would be praised by Jesus as the greatest of men born on this earth.

Yes, John’s life was different .It was the life a prophet, intent on the reformation of the society. He was totally devoid of any earthly fame or glory. He never sought the company of the rich or the wealthy nor did he seek the comforts of the world. His food was grasshoppers and wild honey. He kept a low profile and a humble way of life. He told his disciples that he must decrease and that Jesus must increase. In the heights of greatness, he was the humblest of human beings.

It is this John who stands at the doorway of Advent asking us to undergo a similar spiritual transformation, avoiding the path of sin and returning to God.

We have to ask ourselves what kind of transformation we have to make in our lives. Will we allow God to transform us, to make us new persons or are we going to be people of hate, and anger, of selfishness and arrogance or of forgiveness and compassion? The choice is ours to make. The paths are before us. It is for us to make the right choice and choose the right path. We have to make the choice of doing good and helping people. St. Paul writes to the Romans: “Never pay back evil with evil…Never try to get revenge…Do not be mastered by evil, but master evil with good.”(Rom.12:14-21).

As Henri Nouwen puts it, we have a lot of road crossings to do in this season of Advent: “If we could cross the road once in a while and pay attention to what is happening on the other side, we might indeed become neighbors.”

May the life of John the Baptist inspire us to become the messengers of the Good News and to make us more loving and forgiving.


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