Today is the last Friday before the Christmas season starts. Last Sunday was the Feast of Christ the King - the end of the Catholic year. So, belated Happy New Year everyone.
The Feast of Christ the King was established by Pope Pius XI in 1925 as an antidote to secularism, a way of life which leaves God out of man's thinking and living and organizes his life as if God did not exist. The feast is intended to proclaim in a striking and effective manner Christ's royalty over individuals, families, society, governments, and nations.Today is the Feast of Saint Andrew, the Apostle, as Andrei reminds us.
Last year at this time, it was my first Christmas as a Christian in nearly 20 years. I was acutely aware of when Advent (the countdown to Christmas) started. This year, Advent starts on Sunday on December 2nd.
During Advent, we are admonished to:
- to prepare ourselves worthily to celebrate the anniversary of the Lord's coming into the world as the incarnate God of love,
- thus to make our souls fitting abodes for the Redeemer coming in Holy Communion and through grace, and
- thereby to make ourselves ready for His final coming as judge, at death and at the end of the world.