Lectio Divina: First Sunday of Advent - Year B

on 24 Nov, 2020
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Medellín (Colombia), SR. ROSEMARY CASTAÑEDA MONTOYA, November 29, 2020.- “LET’S ANCHOR OUR HOPE”. It is well known to all of us that Covid19 pandemic virus has led many, including us to reflect on the organization of the world and ask ourselves about our life in the Community of Marie Poussepin and our “common home.”

We were also surprised at, not being able to continue the kind of life that we were leading: Planned schedules, meetings, travels…We experienced that we lacked “stillness, silence, and solitude.” And it enabled us to enjoy once again “the gift of contemplation and its fruitfulness.” And it is in that dwelling or inner cell, as Saint Catherine of Siena tells us, that we encounter the Word of God, which facilitates the dialogue of love with the Beloved.
 
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“Let us therefore arise at once, the Scripture stirring us up saying, it is now
the hour for us to rise from sleep (Rom. 13:11).
And our eyes now open to the divine light, let us with
wondering ears hearken to the divine voice, daily calling to us and warning us...”
(Rule of Saint Benedict, Prologue, 2-3).
 

INVOCATION OF THE HOLY SPIRIT

COME HOLY SPIRIT! Make space within me, so that the Word of Jesus, the only Word with the power to save, can resonate within me. Amen.
 
1DAdviento1DAdviento 

GOSPEL

Mark 13: 33-37.  A “WATCHFUL WAITING.” 

“Be watchful! Be alert! You do not know when the time will come. It is like a man traveling abroad. He leaves home and places his servants in charge, each with his work, and orders the gatekeeper to be on the watch. Watch, therefore; you do not know when the lord of the house is coming, whether in the evening, or at midnight, or at cockcrow, or in the morning. May he not come suddenly and find you sleeping. What I say to you, I say to all: ‘Watch!’”.

DIVISION OF THE TEXT TO UNDERSTAND BETTER 

Jesus is in Jerusalem, sitting on the Mount of Olives, looking towards the Temple and talking confidently with four disciples: Peter, James, John and Andrew. He sees them very concerned about when the end of times will come. On the contrary, he is concerned about how his followers will live, when they will no longer have him with them. In the short Gospel passage that we read today, we play with the twofold image of ‘sleep’ and ‘being awake.’ Therefore, the most repeated Words are: “be watchful,” “be alert.” And this is how it resounds in the ears of the disciples: “Be Watchful!”

“Be Alert!” In the gospel passage, this requirement is repeated three times and it is the central point of all the teachings:

  • “Be watchful! Be alert!” (13: 33)
  • “Be Watchful, therefore…” (13: 35)
  • “I say to all: Be Watchful!” (13: 37).

The words “be watchful” will be repeated once more within the parable (and orders the gatekeeper to “be watchful” 13: 34), thus making a total of four times, the repetition of the word.  The whole discourse is interspersed with this type of call for attention. This is the fourth and last time that Jesus says it:

  • “See that no one deceives you” (13:5)
  • “Watch out for yourself” (13: 9)
  • “Be watchful! I have told it all to you” (13: 23)
  • “Be watchful…” (13: 33)

SILENCE, MEDITATION 

WE ARE “SENTINELS” OF HOPE

If we, in a concrete way, practice our vigilance, in the midst of all the turmoils that we go through at present, we can see from above THE TRUTH and discover that love which does not leave out any one.  

This is a whole project of discipleship that the Gospel of today presents to us. In the house of Jesus no one should remain passive.

Will the spirit of Jesus be kept alive among His own people? Will they continue to remember his style of service to the most needy and helpless? Will they follow the path opened by Him? His great concern is that His church falls asleep. So. He urges them three times: “be awake.” This is not a recommendation to the four disciples who are listening to Him, but a commandment to believers of all times: “What I tell you, I say to all of you: Be Watchful.” 

PRAYER 

BE ALERT TO LIVE “THE NIGHT.”   

Wake up, a new day is beginning, a day that brings us hope. Remove the routine from your lives so that sadness may not invade your souls.

Do not panic when we see the world changing so much. The Lord is near. Don’t you feel Him? He passes by our side and lifts us up.

It is Advent! It is a time flooded with graces. Isiah, Mary and John the Baptist with their warm voice accompany us. May hope shine forth more brightly on those who are discouraged and confused, who see nothing and expect nothing and who have been impoverished by injustice! (from Advent Proclamation).

CONTEMPLATION 

Let us contemplate hope 

“What I tell you, I say to all of you: Be Watchful!”

“At sunset,
or at midnight,
or at cockcrow,
or at sunrise.”