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PARISH TEAM CONTACTS:

Postal Address:
PO Box 21
Cranebrook NSW 2749
   
Church Address:
86-94 Andromeda Drive,
Cranebrook
   
Office Address:
86 Andromeda Drive,
Cranebrook

Presbytery:
94 Andromeda Drive,
Cranebrook
  
Tel: 61 2 4730 1249
Fax: 61 2 4729 2989
  
Email: parishteam@corpuschristi.org.au
  
PARISH TEAM: 
  
Fr George O'Mara:
Email: gom@corpuschristi.org.au


Mrs Marie Cottee - Secretary:
(Tues, Thurs & Fri 9am - 4pm)
Email: mc@corpuschristi.org.au

Part Time:
Mrs Sue Weekes - Office support:
Email: sw@corpuschristi.org.au

Mrs Joanne Hocking - Sacraments Support

 


 
 

THIRD SUNDAY OF ADVENT - YEAR B


Reflection by Richard Leonard SJ...

 

Today is traditionally called Gaudete Sunday. Over the first millennium of Christianity Advent was like a late Lent. Both were five weeks long, both were marked by fasting and penance and both gave the faithful a day off half way through. In Lent Laudete Sunday is still, roughly, half way through the five-week season. Advent, however, was shortened to four weeks in the tenth century, and Pope St Gregory the Great eased the fasting and penitential aspects of this season in the twelfth century, but the not-so-half-way Gaudete Sunday has remained. It is, literally, the ‘rejoicing’ Sunday when we look more directly at Jesus’ coming at Christmas.
 
To enable us to look at Jesus we start with the man who heralded his mission in the world, John the Baptist. In today’s Gospel John the Baptist is the model of humility, opening the way for the Kingdom of Jesus to break in upon the world. We should never underestimate talent spotters, for as this story demonstrates, they all have John the Baptist as their patron saint.
 
Fleming was a poor Scottish farmer in the nineteenth century. One day, while trying to make a living for his family, he heard a cry for help coming from a nearby bog. He dropped his tools and ran to the bog. There, mired to his waist in black muck, was a terrified boy, screaming and struggling to free himself. Farmer Fleming saved the lad from what could have been a slow and terrifying death.
The next day, a fancy carriage pulled up to the Scotsman's sparse cottage. An elegantly dressed nobleman stepped out and introduced himself as the father of the boy Farmer Fleming had saved. ‘I want to repay you,’ said the nobleman. ‘You saved my son's life.’ ‘No, I can't accept payment for what I did,’ the Scottish farmer replied, waving away the offer.
 
At that moment, the farmer's own son came to the door of the family home. ‘Is that your son?’ the nobleman asked. ‘Yes,’ the farmer replied proudly. ‘I'll make you a deal. Let me take him and give him a good education. If the lad is anything like his father, he'll grow up to be a man you can be proud of.’ And that is what he did.
In time, Farmer Fleming’s son graduated from St Mary’s Medical School in London, and went on to become known throughout the world as the noted Sir Alexander Fleming, the discoverer of Penicillin. Years afterward, the nobleman's son was stricken with pneumonia. What saved him? Penicillin.
 
The nobleman's name? Randolph Churchill. His son’s name? Sir Winston Churchill.
 
John the Baptist, the embodiment of the old covenant, recognises who Jesus is for the world and encourages his foes and friends alike to welcome in the Christ, the new and everlasting Covenant. Just like Farmer Fleming or Lord Randolph Churchill, he could not have known the implications of what he was doing. John the Baptist simply saw Jesus and knew that Love had taken human form. Through his talent spotting and in his promotion of Jesus he enabled the first generation of Christians to see and believe that the promises made to their ancestors had been fulfilled.
 
No wonder we have him as our focus on Gaudete Sunday. And so may we all rejoice today, not only because salvation is always close at hand in Christ the Lord, but because we are also called to spot his love in every act of goodness we see, encourage and promote it as best we can and then watch nature and grace do the rest.
  

Third Sunday of Advent
 

God has called you and he will not fail you.” (Thessalonians 5:24)

These final days of Advent tend to be about anything other than rejoicing and giving thanks. The hectic pace of December’s end of year requirements—all the functions, parties and get togethers—leave us breathlessly running from one thing to another, not to mention all the final gift buying and preparations for our family gatherings and holidays.

Then we can get stressed by what the Church asks of us—to reflect on the place of Jesus in our lives and his call, especially in the liturgy today, to rejoice in God. In the
Psalm we hear Mary, the mother of Jesus, cry out: “The Almighty works marvels for me. Holy is his name!” So Mary reminds us that all of this is always about God and what he has done in our lives. And, “He has done great things in me.”

Jesus is not just ‘the reason for the season’ but he is the reason for everything. He is the one who has loved us and called us and saved us—for a purpose. A purpose that is about sharing in the very mission of Jesus to bring good news to the poor and bind up the broken hearted.

PRAY…
God, fill us with the joy of Christ as we eagerly await his coming at
Christmas. May the joy you bring inspire us to care for each other as we journey together as one human family.
Amen.