Rejoice in The Lord always! Again, I say rejoice! This third week of Advent is more than just priests wearing pink…it’s about the coming of The Lord and His birth is nearly upon us! So this week’s readings lead us to The Lord in a unique way, and they give us a sense of salvation – the cross – while we anticipate an innocent baby being born.
Our activity is a simple but not easy moment or two each evening with our family. Do you dare approach The Lord and anticipate His arrival with such a small sacrifice?
Catechesis At Home – Third Sunday of Advent – Year C
Rejoice in The Lord
[will open a new tab or window].
Rejoice in the Lord
REFLECTION – Rejoice in the Lord always. I shall say it again: rejoice!
“Rejoice in the Lord always. I shall say it again: rejoice!” is from our second reading today, Philippians 4:4. It is also the Entrance Antiphon for Mass and the reason we celebrate Guadete Sunday midway through Advent. (You can see last year’s Mass Warm Up for more on that.)
St. Paul continues in his letter to the Philippians (4:6-7) with an exhortation to prayer: “Have no anxiety at all, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, make your requests known to God.” And a promise: “Then the peace of God that surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.”
Pray, rejoice, worship God in all things, trust Him with everything, give thanks for all He has given us, and the answer we will receive is PEACE. Don’t we all want that? In this crazy, sinful, fallen world, can we have peace? Yes, through faith in our Lord, Jesus Christ. He promises and fulfills that promise. In the first reading today, Zephaniah is the voice of the promise:
“The LORD, your God, is in your midst,
a mighty savior;
he will rejoice over you with gladness,
and renew you in his love.” (Zephaniah 3:17)
And John the Baptist explains how he is NOT the waited for Messiah, but the one who comes after him is. We are given a prelude to Jesus in the prophets – He is hinted at, pointed to, and promised. In His Incarnation, which we celebrate most particularly at Christmas, He begins to fulfill those promises. Through His entire earthly life – from His humble birth, hidden childhood, public ministry and finally His Passion, death and Resurrection, He fulfills the promises of the Old Covenant and establishes the New Covenant – which we partake in each celebration of the Mass in the Eucharist and in our everyday lives and relationships. Christ came to save us. “Rejoice in the Lord always. I shall say it again: rejoice!”
DISCUSSION – I say again: Rejoice!
Why do we repeat things? Typically, because they are important. With your family and friends talk about what things you remember hearing often growing up. If you are parents, you are probably thinking of things you repeat to your children as you read this! Try to think of things you remember from your own childhood that your parents or teachers repeated. As you list things out, think about their importance. Was it important to hear – no running at the pool? Or look both ways before crossing the street? What about “say your prayers”?
Think about how you have learned certain prayers or truths of our faith. Is it through repetition? Most likely.
Now as you move into the activity, remember that repetition is a good way to learn something new, and to make it a habit!
ACTIVITY – I rejoice in God my Savior! Rejoice in The Lord always.
Pray the Magnificat every day this week. Maybe at family prayer time – whether morning or evening. Print out the words for those in the family who can read. You can print the prayer card from HolyOwnedandOperated.com [English][Spanish]. These words of Mary when she visited her cousin Elizabeth have been incorporated into the Liturgy of the Hours – the prayer of the Church. Look at the words she says:
My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord,
my spirit rejoices in God my Savior
for he has looked with favor on his lowly servant.
From this day all generations will call me blessed:
the Almighty has done great things for me,
and holy is his Name.
He has mercy on those who fear him
in every generation.
He has shown the strength of his arm,
he has scattered the proud in their conceit.
He has cast down the mighty from their thrones,
and has lifted up the lowly.
He has filled the hungry with good things,
and the rich he has sent away empty.
He has come to the help of his servant Israel
for he remembered his promise of mercy,
the promise he made to our fathers,
to Abraham and his children forever.
(Lk 1: 46-55)
She rejoices in God her savior and she sings of the promises of God fulfilled in the Person of her womb. For the entire context of this prayer read Luke 1: 39 – 55.
LEARN MORE – Other Rejoice in The Lord resources from Holy Owned and Operated:
Links open in a new tab or window according to your settings so that you can compare and continue in this lesson’s theme.
Page: Advent Resources
Page: Prayer Basics
Podcast: Joy – Episode 21
Podcast: The Lord’s Prayer – Episode 45
Podcast: Celebrating Advent – Episode 70
TWMWU:Third Week of Advent – Rejoice!
TWMWU: This Is the Day the Lord Has Made
TWMWU: Are You Prepared?
TWMWU: Prepare The Way Of The Lord
TWMWU: Second Week of Advent – Prepare!
Article: The Meanings Behind Our Advent Traditions
How do you (or your family) Rejoice in The Lord?
by Beth & Kristofer Cowles
Other Help on HOO
One of the seven social teachings of the Catholic Church, caring for our earthly home is intimately connected to every part of our life.
After quoting an 80s video game and Monty Python, Beth and Kristofer dive into this topic with Kristofer making sure everyone knows he is not a tree hugger.
Then they go on identifying birds and trees as they walk by. Well, the topic is what the topic is – and they do answer the question we all have about that environment issue.
Yeah, that one.