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December 20, 2020 - Fourth Sunday of Advent

“Forever I will sing the goodness of the Lord.”

Psalm 89


2 Samuel 7:1-5, 8b-12, 14a, 16

Romans 16:25-27

Luke 1:26-38


by Sister Maureen Niedermeyer, OSB

In today’s reading we experience King David’s dismay that, while he had a magnificent palace, God is still dwelling in a simple tent! The prophet Nathan speaks with authority the words of God to him. Perhaps David was saddened and surprised that his wish to give God a fancy home would not be fulfilled. Have you ever wished to accomplish a task and were unable to do so? We have discovered that our ways are not God’s ways. But David was reassured that his son Solomon would be the one who would build God’s dwelling. God’s promised blessings will last forever and have come down to us today, many centuries later.

Mary’s simple, yet profound “Yes”still amazes us when we hear today’s gospel. She shows shock and yet openness to the awesome request. How do I respond when God asks me to do something that seems impossible to carry out? May I take courage from Mary’s example of faithfulness and love, knowing that the grace will be there for me when I need it. The Messiah desires to dwell within each of us. And so, the mystery continues on in our own day.

Our Responsorial Psalm, “Forever I will sing the goodness of the Lord.” reminds us of God’s continuing love for us. I would invite you to listen to Part I of Handel’s oratorio “The Messiah.” Written more than 280 years ago you will find that your heart will soar with the music and the message.

From the Rule of St. Benedict

“First of all when you begin a good work, you must pray to God most earnestly to bring it to perfection.” Prologue v.4

Gospel Acclamation

“Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord. May it be done to me according to your word.” Luke 1:38


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