THOUGHT FOR THE WEEK December 4-10, 2016




The unusual image of the lion lying down with lamb appears in this week’s readings. Is 11: 1-10     Again, the reference to the end of time is vivid.  Rather then, being afraid, we can see the presence of an all loving and compassionate God, who will judge with justice.  In this end time picture we see peace entering into the world forever

The lion and lamb image moves on to the child and the cobra in Isaiah’s reading.  This is moving closer to profound meaning of these images.  Images or symbols always have a deeper meaning, and these are shoving us to look deeply at reconciliation.  This is the ultimate resolution of conflict and violence. However, the motive for this reconciliation is love and respect, not fear, power, pressure or economic gain. A wish for the good of the other and future healthy relationships moves the process to the coming  of the Kingdom of God.  This Second Week of Advent provides us with reflection on the true meaning of Jesus’ coming.

Little Christmas, December 6, gives us an opportunity to enter into a quick celebration of Christmas.  A sharing of a small gift, whether that be a hug, a “thank you” or present, will make the anticipation of the “big” day more fun.  St. Nicholas, a bishop of the fourth century, who was born in present day Turkey is the basis for the person we call Santa Claus.  He was the giver of secret gifts to help the poor.  Reading the whole story of his life would be a treat.

St. Ambrose has special meaning for St. Augustine School, because he is responsible for the conversion of St. Augustine, aside from the fact that his mother, Monica prayed for him incessantly.  Ambrose was the Bishop of Milan and a staunch supporter of the two natures of Jesus, human and divine – a basic dogma of the Church. He is a Doctor of the Church, who was one of the most influential ecclesiastical person of the 4th century.  He is honored on December 7th.

The first great Feast of Mary in December is the 8th – The Immaculate Conception.  This feast speaks of the preparation of the cradle in which Jesus, the Son of God, would rest and develop for nine months.  St. Ann conceived Mary without the consequences of the first sin. Ann must have been a very holy woman, as well as, her husband, Joachim. Little did they know, that their gifted child, Mary, would become the mother of the Messiah.

On the 9th we celebrate St. Juan Diego Cuauhtlatoatzn, a young indigenous man, to whom Mary appeared in Mexico. His cloak became the background on to which Mary imprinted her image to convince the bishop of the truth of her appearances to Juan and her message.

This week provides so many wonderful stories, that it will take time to reflect upon the meaning and application of these lives to our own.  May you be inspired by these stories of salvation history and get busy and write your own story with the goodness of your life. Jesus is your companion.

Sister Rosemarie Goins, CSSF Director



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