"Be vigilant at all times"

We prepare to celebrate the anniversary of the Coming of Christ on the first Christmas Day and we look back into history and reacquaint ourselves with the stories of how Jesus came to be born. You could call this his First Coming. We also look forward to Christ’s Second Coming at the end of time and that’s what our Gospel text today points to. And we are encouraged to put our lives in order and be ready to face judgement.

Sunday Readings' Discussion Questions
First Sunday of Advent, Dec. 2, 2012 (1AdvC)
From the
Center for Liturgy at Saint Louis University

Sunday Readings
Podcast of the Readings 
Video of Reflections on Readings
Lecturas y Comentarios 
New American Bible
Prayer of the Hours
BQ: What is Holiness?

Questions on Sunday's Readings for use by discussion groups,
prayer groups, or for individual prayer.

First Reading
Jeremiah 33:14-16

1. Advent is a process of looking back at Christ’s birth and the inauguration of his kingdom on earth and looking forward to it fulfillment. What does Advent awaken in you? Does anything in your daily life interfere with your Advent spiritual preparation?

2. In this reading Jeremiah reminds people of the Lord’s promise to them. How does that promise relate to hope? Why is Advent called the season of hope? Why is hope vital to your life? What would your life be like without hope? What can you do to bring hope to people you know?

Responsorial Psalm
Psalm 25:4-5, 8-9, 10, 14

1. Our Psalm response this Sunday is, 'To you, O Lord, I lift my soul.' As we begin the season of Advent, speak of how you are raised up spiritually by the coming arrival of our Lord.

2. Our psalmist petitions the Lord to make known His ways and teach us His paths. Tell of how you have been shown direction by the Lord along the path of life.

Second Reading
1 Thessalonians 3:12-4:2

1. St. Paul says that the same Jesus who lived and died and rose from the dead is present and active among us now making us increase (in numbers) and abound in love for one another and for all. How do you think “increasing in numbers” correlates with “abounding in love for one another and for all”?

2. St. Paul said he “abounded in love” for the Thessalonians to strengthen their hearts. Discuss “abounding in love” as an effective method of strengthening hearts or eliciting change of any kind. Do you think great change or growth ever happens without immense love?

Luke 21:25-28, 34-36

1. Could much of this Gospel have been written today (roaring sea, drowsy hearts, dying of fright, anxieties, carousing, tribulations)? Jesus tells us to pray for strength. Do you believe that if you ask for strength you will receive it? Could God send it through other people? Could you be a source of strength for others?

3. Jesus is God’s Last Word to us (Christ’s Incarnation). Discuss this idea.

Sunday Bible Study Group
Please share your thoughts online on the Sunday Readings. And please do use these questions for your own Bible study sessions with family and friends.

1 comment:

  1. Barry Lamont12:56 PM

    “Good and upright is the Lord,
    who shows sinners the way.”

    We are blessed to have a God
    who does not disregard us.
    On the contrary, He is a caring,
    compassionate God, willing
    to humble himself to share in
    our humanity, so that we might
    share in his divinity. Who else
    would have such regard for sinners,
    for believers who disobey him?

    The Lord is talking to all of us here;
    we are all sinners. Jesus was criticized
    for consorting with sinners, but He
    replied that the sick (people like us)
    are the ones who need a physician.
    We are all able to benefit from the
    healing power of Jesus. As our
    psalmist says, the Lord is compassionate
    and loving. All we have to do is to
    humble ourselves before Him and keep
    His covenant.

    “Make known to me your ways, Lord;
    teach me your paths.”
    The prophets tell us that if we follow
    the Lords way, we will be able to turn
    away from sin and avoid death. And
    how does the Lord show us the way?
    By sending us His son, who is the way,
    the truth, and the life!

    We know that salvation is available to
    us through the coming of the Messiah.
    Our psalmist, David, celebrates the
    coming of Christ when he says, “You
    are God my savior, for you I wait all
    the day long.”

    And where does the power come from
    to turn away from sin? It comes from
    the Lord, who “shows sinners the way.”
    It is He who encourages us when our
    tongues confess –
    “The Lord guides the humble rightly,
    and teaches the humble His way.”