It’s Gaudete Sunday!
That means “rejoice!”

As my Sbird says, “It’s pink!”
Even the advent candle today is pink instead of purple.
So, what’s not to like?

It’s the third Sunday of advent and this Sunday is the day to remember that the whole reason for advent is to prepare for the coming birth of the Messiah. This is what we read in Mass today, Isaiah 61:

The spirit of the Lord God is upon me,
because the Lord has anointed me;
he has sent me to bring good news to the oppressed,
to bind up the broken-hearted,
to proclaim liberty to the captives,
and release to the prisoners;
2to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favour,

This, here, is the song version of it I like, by Matt Maher, the one that has been running through my head today.

So today we rejoice. We are so close to Christmas! So close the birth of Jesus! Go to Amy Welborn, Anchoress, or Deacon for good posts on this joyous day.

For me, this is a happy day, I feel the call to rejoice. We have had a very ‘adventy” weekend: we are putting up Christmas lights on the house (I always balk but they are like magic in the dark), we are finishing the cards, we pulled the Christmas tubs out of the attic to find the stockings and stuff. I might even lose my head and make some cookies or gingerbread.

We are called to rejoice, not only today, but always. To give thanks and be glad in all things. And its not always so easy, but so worth the effort. The very cool Jana, new mom to the gorgeous cutie Ruthie, sent us an early Christmas gift. She is getting over jetlag and sleep deprivation and yet she found the time to send us a short video of our daughter in Ethiopia. It is the best minute on tape I’ve seen in ages! It shows her smiling and we get to hear her voice, just a whisper, but hers. And so, I dreamt about her, vividly, this morning. Such a Christmas gift, such an advent gift! Thank you Jana!

My thoughts are all muddly…..but I’ll blurt them out anyhow.
Somehow that short video is fitting for this weekend in particular. Because with it, we rejoice. With it we are able to prepare a little bit more for her arrival. We don’t know when it will be. But we are in preparation mode. Just as we are during advent. We prepare in our hearts and home for a new child, not a babe….but a new one coming to us. It is the welcoming of a stranger to us, and yet, not a stranger. Just like so long ago the world welcomed a new baby, a stranger to us, and yet, so not a stranger.

Preparation and rejoicing. That is our call for this weekend especially. Not too hard, after all, it’s pink all over: our sweet girl, the vestments (see the snazzy Pope above), the candles.

So, for us, we prepare. We rejoice. I love advent!