Well, the cycle is almost complete. The liturgical year, which is 52 Sundays centering on salvation history and the redeeming actions of Jesus Christ, is coming to an end. Last Sunday we celebrated that Jesus Christ is the Lord of history realized by our very human expression “king.” Next Sunday, we begin a new Church Year on the first Sunday of Advent and this season will, of course, remind us of the time between Adam and Eve and the coming of Jesus. It was a time of preparation then and it should be a time of preparation for us as well as we anticipate the first great day in the liturgical year – Christmas.
The liturgical year is a great gift to all of us. It evolved slowly over the centuries and while there is a certain simplicity in its design, centering as it does on the three great feasts of the year – the birth of the Lord, the Nativity; his resurrection, Easter Sunday; and the commission of the Church to bring the good news to the world, Pentecost Sunday – there are ups and down with Advent and Lent being serious times of prayer and meditation and Christmas and Easter being short periods of exaltation and celebration. Ideally, in our own personal lives we should enter into those moods and create in our daily lives an atmosphere comparable to them; to think, pray and act in harmony with the Church. When we do this, we should be conscious of the fact that we are thinking, praying and acting in harmony with our fellow Christians all over the world.
We are never alone on this journey. Happy Thanksgiving!