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1st Sunday in Advent, Year B

The Second Coming of Christ: Stay Awake!


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Welcome everyone to the beginning of a new liturgical year starting with the season of Advent.  We are now in Year B, in which the Church starts a whole new cycle of readings in the three-year cycle of Sunday readings.  We are going to focus this year on the second Gospel, the Gospel according to St. Mark.  So one of the things I want say before we begin is just to keep in mind that Advent, although for us in the secular year is the end of the year, in the liturgical year it is the beginning.  So the Church is going to give us, for the next four weeks, a series of very carefully selected readings that are meant to help us enter into the Advent season, which as you are going to see precisely through the readings, is different than the Christmas season.  Sometimes people tend to get them mixed up with one another, but the Advent season is really the season of preparation and it consists of these four Sundays.  So for this year we are going to begin the first Sunday of Advent with a new gospel, the gospel of St. Mark.  And we are going to start in a place that might be a little surprising to you...


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