Advent Questions

10 December 2022

Advent, Seasons

Third Sunday in Advent, Year A. John began his ministry as we saw last week with a very clear idea about where he sat, where he fitted within the broad spectrum of Jewish life and indeed of what we call salvation history. His sense that like Elijah that he clearly knew the kind of model…

Advent Call

4 December 2022

Advent, Seasons

Second Sunday in Advent, Year A First Reading ‡ Isaiah 11:1-10He judges the poor with justice. Responsorial ‡ Psalm 71:1-2.7-8.12-13.17Justice shall flourish in his time, and fullness of peace for ever. Second Reading ‡ Romans 15:4-9Christ, the hope of all people. Gospel ‡ Matthew 3:1-12Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is close at hand. Play…

Advent Hope

27 November 2022

Advent, Season of Growth, Seasons, Year A

Advent – Welcome! From the Greek word “parousia”, meaning arrival or coming: ready or not! 4 full weeks this year with Christmas on a Sunday. The longest it can be. Next year, with Christmas on a Monday, it is the shortest (3 weeks and 1 day). Won’t have Christmas on a Sunday again until 2033….

Responding in Love

19 December 2021

Advent, Seasons

Fourth Sunday in Advent, Year C. First Reading ‡ Micah 5:1- 4Responsorial ‡ Psalm 79:2-3.15-16.18-19Lord, make us turn to you; let us see your face and we shall be saved.Second Reading ‡ Hebrews 10:5-10Gospel ‡ Luke 1:39-44Play MP3Watch video (I forgot that I am tall)Readings What is your favourite scene in the life of Mary?…

Nature of the Messiah

15 December 2021

Advent, Seasons

Wednesday during Week 3 in the Season of Advent A reading from the Holy Gospel, according to Luke. (Luke 7:19-23) John, summoning two of his disciples sent them to the Lord to ask: Are you the one who is to come, or must we wait for someone else?  When the men reached Jesus, they said “John the Baptist has sent…

Joy in God

12 December 2021

Advent, Season of Growth, Seasons, Year C

Advent 3, Year C Zephaniah 3:14-18.Philippians 4:4-7Luke 3:10-18Play MP3 Generated Transcript (9.30am Mass)Generated Transcript00:00:00If we read the first reading today without any kind of sense or understanding of the history or the background, we might think that the Prophet Zephaniah is just this naturally happy, bubbly kind of a person.00:00:16I mean, someone who is able…

Advent Joy

11 December 2021

Advent, Season of Growth, Seasons, Year C

Advent 3, Year C Zephaniah 3:14-18.Philippians 4:4-7Luke 3:10-18Play MP3Watch video Key points: Take time to imagine God delighting in you, rejoicing over you! He renews you in his love. It is wonderful to be in a good mood – to be happy, cheerful, joyful. We don’t live in a joy fest – the world is…

Prepare for Peace

5 December 2021

Advent, Season of Growth, Seasons, Year C

As we move through the season of Advent, there can be so many themes and ideas thrown in our direction, it can be difficult to keep up.There is the movement through the four Sundays, which is fairly consistent across the three-year-cycle of readings: Sunday 1 focusses on the ‘end times’; Sunday 2 and 3 on…

He draws near

28 November 2021

Advent, Season of Growth, Seasons, Year C

The Gospel today has always tended to set a note of fear within me. It seems like God is waiting to spring out and catch me in a trap. The way that I have heard this has often instilled a very unhealthy spiritual sense. As I prayed with the readings the notes played within the…

Taking human flesh

19 December 2020

Advent, Seasons

When Paul wanted to convey his most developed and longest letter to the half-dozen or so house churches in the city of Rome, he needed to find someone who understood exactly what he wanted to say, who perhaps was able to memorise the letter word-for-word and who knew how to interpret the letter and perform…

Joy and Delight

13 December 2020

Advent, Season of Growth, Seasons, Year B

Do you remember what it was like to learn English? The experience will be very different depending on whether it was your first language learnt as an infant, or much later in life. In any language, there are at least 4 main components: learning to hear and understand what is said, learning to speak the…


6 December 2020

Advent, Season of Growth, Seasons, Year B

Comfort my people, comfort them. Like the other 3 gospels, the one that we read from today – which we announce is “according to mark” is anonymous. The tradition that has named the author as Mark, or John Mark, dates to the second century. From the third century, it was believed that Matthew wrote his…

Tear open the heavens

28 November 2020

Advent, Season of Growth, Seasons, Year B

We transition today into a new liturgical year. What is unusual about this new season of Advent is that the themes of the readings that we have been hearing during the last few weeks continue as we move from ordinary time into the new season. It is the only time during the liturgical year that…

Grace impels us to go in haste

23 December 2018

Advent, Season of Growth, Seasons, Year C

The liturgy through the season of Advent provides events and characters to meditate upon. We are joined by Hebrew Testament prophets in our journey who express the hopes and longings of the generations of people for the Messiah to come. In the weekday Masses, Isaiah provides the main voice, but in our Sunday Masses, we…

Rejoice in the day of the Lord

16 December 2018

Advent, Season of Growth, Seasons, Year C

As a society we so often accept poor substitutes rather than the fullness of life experience that is offered to us. When we journey through the season of Advent, it can at times feel like a poor substitute for the season of Lent. The reality is very different – because the character of the season…

Arise and look to the east

9 December 2018

Advent, Season of Growth, Seasons, Year C

The readings today reminded me of being in Brisbane at the start of 2011, when the devastating flood waters that had claimed too many lives in the Lockyer Valley moved downstream towards the city. Authorities did not want any more lives to be lost, so did all that they could to ensure that the population…

Days of darkness (Advent)

2 December 2018

Advent, Season of Growth, Seasons, Year C

We begin the new liturgical year (Year C) in much the same tone as we concluded Year B – with a focus on the destruction of Jerusalem. So it seems appropriate to reflect on the events that would have so marked the lives of any Christians living in the forty-year period between the wonderful events…


24 December 2017

Advent, Seasons

The Gospel from Luke 1:26-38 presents the familiar scene of the Angel Gabriel being sent by God to announce to Mary that she would become a mother to the Son of God. This is one of the passages that I spent many hours pondering during my recent thirty-day Ignatian retreat, and the first thing that…

Rejoice in Joy

17 December 2017

Advent, Seasons

On the third Sunday of Advent there is the cry of joy and the imperative call to rejoice and be glad. In the midst of the craziness of this time of year it might all seem to be too much. Yet Paul quietly calls us to focus in the series of short commandments that he…

Good news

9 December 2017

Advent, Seasons

The Gospel of Mark was written, most likely, around the year 65 in the city of Rome. It was a very turbulent period, after the great fire that had raged for seven days through the city in July 64. The Emperor Nero needed someone to blame for lighting the fire – although many suggest that…

Stay Awake

2 December 2017

Advent, Seasons

Happy new year! (Such a geeky liturgical thing to say!) We begin this new season of Advent today, and with this Sunday the whole cycle of the church’s year begins again. We switch from listening to the gospel of Matthew and begin to listen to the first of the gospels to be written, the gospel…

Four Transcendentals: Beauty

18 December 2016

Advent, Seasons, Series

We come to the final transcendental this week as we encounter Beauty. Over the weeks of Advent we have journeyed through these ideas that are present in every single thing, indeed in being itself – ‘Omni ens est unum, bonum, verum et pulchrum’ – that all being is one, good, true and beautiful. “The quality…

Four Transcendentals: True

11 December 2016

Advent, Seasons, Series

When John the precursor asks the question of Jesus – are you the long-anticipated Messiah – or are we to wait for someone else? – he taps into the long tradition of the prophets and holy people of Israel who had longed for a new David to set them free from all of their oppressors…

Four Transcendentals: Good

4 December 2016

Advent, Seasons, Series

All being is one, good, true and beautiful (Omne ens est unum, bonum, verum et pulchrum) The word Good is very commonly used in the scriptures (more than 500 times), but it can mean one of ten things: useful; pleasing / agreeable; advantageous / profitable; fitting / appropriate; abundant / full-measure; generous / benevolent; sound…

Four Transcendentals: One

27 November 2016

Advent, Season of Growth, Seasons, Series, Year A

One small piece of wisdom that has come down from the ages (it was first stated in Greek philosophy, and then offered into the Christian tradition through the writings of the Eastern fathers, St Augustine, and then codified in scholastic philosophy through the writings of St Thomas Aquinas) is the Latin phrase: omne/omnia ens est…

The law of four – part 4 (The Infancy Narratives)

20 December 2015

Advent, Seasons, Series, Teaching

As we have wandered through the stories behind the stories of the gospels and their composition and connection to the church, life and our own histories, it seemed appropriate to think about how the stories that are told about the birth of Jesus would fit within this new understanding. So considering the writings of the…

The law of four – part 3

13 December 2015

Advent, Seasons, Series, Teaching

We saw in the first week of this series that one of the places that we see the law of four is in every great story ever told as well as in the story of our own lives – the pattern of (1) Hearing the summons; (2) Enduring the obstacles; (3) Receiving the prize/favour and finally (4) Returning…

The law of four – part 2

8 December 2015

Advent, Seasons, Series, Teaching

This week in our Law of Four series, we looked in more detail at the four Gospels, and particularly the connection and relation of the first three Gospels (Matthew, Mark and Luke) – why we call them the Synoptic Gospels, and how over the last 150 years we have developed a better understanding of the…

The law of four – part 1

29 November 2015

Advent, Season of Growth, Seasons, Series, Teaching, Year C

The new parish logo has been inspired by a much larger and more ancient reality. Looking at the nature of church and our involvement within it, as well as the structure of the liturgical year and the arrangement of the readings from the Gospels is part of what we will be considering over the next…

Mary and Gabriel

21 December 2014

Advent, Seasons

The scene that is presented in the Gospel today is one of my favourites. We read from the Gospel of Luke, chapter 1, verses 26-38. The angel Gabriel appears to announce the birth of a child and follows the pattern established in the Hebrew Scriptures: the angel says, ‘do not be afraid’; the recipient is…

Scroll to Top