“Your kindness should be known to all.” Philippians 4:5

Luke the evangelist returns today with what I like to call “Rules of Thumb.”  His storytelling centers on the preaching—once again—of our friend John the Baptist who was asked by a restive crowd what people should do to prepare for the Messiah. 

John answers them, not as a politician but as a missioner.  If you have two cloaks, he says, share one with someone who has none.  If you have extra food, give some to the person who has little.  Even the dreaded tax collectors asked John for advice.  These were predators who routinely bilked people with threats, keeping what they stole.  John told them what they probably knew in their hearts:  don’t exploit people or harm them; be satisfied with your wages.

“Rules of Thumb” come about when people recognize an injustice and commit themselves to ending it.  What better time than Advent to take an inventory of the soul and decide how our baptismal call to serve can guide us in the New Year.  Big reforms are always welcome but ending climate change or extremes of wealth may be beyond our personal reach.  John the Baptist is saying small-scale changes are meaningful, too.  Let charity, especially for the poor, help you do the hard work of day-to-day living.

Friend, when the crowds heard John preach, they were “filled with expectation.”  We are filled with expectation, too, because we know the promise of the Christ Child is at hand.  May the next two weeks be rich for you in prayer and preparation, and all the small gifts of caring and service that honor your call to mission.

Sincerely yours in Christ,

Father ­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­Lance Nadeau, M.M.

Third Sunday of Advent

We long for peace and thirst for justice

O God of Mary, Joseph and John.

Give us the sight to recognize injustice

and the courage to right the wrongs we see.

Help us help others, especially those who

have lost hope and joy of life.

May we build a better world by

being better ourselves.

Even as we await the return of Christ

may we discover anew all the wonders

and miracles with which You have blessed us.

Remove from us, Lord, anything that keeps us

from knowing, loving and following You

more and more everyday.

Fill our hearts with a fervent expectation

of Your kingdom here on earth

beginning with us, here and now.

Amen.

Prayer by Father Joe Veneroso, M.M.

ABOUT MARYKNOLL

We are a Catholic Society of priests and brothers based in the United States. We are dedicated to missionary work overseas in over 20 countries. Additionally, we animate Catholics in the United States to follow their own baptismal call to share God’s compassion and love with the poor, the sick, and all those in need.

OUR GENERAL COUNCIL

L-R Tom O'Brien, Ray Finch, Joe Everson, Russ Feldmeier

(Fr. James M. Lynch, Fr. Lam M. Hua, Fr. Lance P. Nadeau, Fr. Timothy O. Kilkelly)

The Maryknoll Fathers and Brothers is overseen by our General Council, led by Superior General Rev. Lance P. Nadeau, M.M.

OUR FOUNDERS

L-R Tom O'Brien, Ray Finch, Joe Everson, Russ Feldmeier

(Our Co-Founders Father Price and Father Walsh)

PLACES WE SERVE

EVANGELIZATION, PARISHES, AND PROJECTS

USA

STORIES OF MISSION

(Africa) Education and Formation of African Clergy

The Maryknoll Fathers and Brothers Africa Region will provide tuition assistance to African clergy, male and female religious at institutes of higher education or specialized training. Read More

Stories of Our Global Mission

The calling of a lifetime

The life of a Maryknoll missioner is challenging, fulfilling, and deeply rewarding. Follow your baptismal call to mission by sharing God’s compassion with the poor, the sick, and people most in need.

L-R Tom O'Brien, Ray Finch, Joe Everson, Russ Feldmeier
“Go where you are needed but not wanted, and stay until you are wanted but not needed.”
– Bishop James E. Walsh, M.M.
First Maryknoll Bishop
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