A Note From Father Eickhoff

December 3, 2023

In today’s Gospel we are directed by Jesus Christ to be watchful for the hour when the Lord will come in glory.  This seems to us to be a good and reasonable thing to do.  However, the question arises as to what notices we are to receive so that we may know when the Lord is to return.  The ordinary notices that we are used to receiving about upcoming events do not seem likely for such an event.  I very much doubt that we will receive text messages from God announcing the imminent arrival of the King of Glory.  Instead, the best way to be watchful is to be in close union with God through regular prayer, the Sacraments, and the reading of the Holy Scriptures.  If we are in close union with God not only will we be better able to recognize the Lord when His arrival in glory nears; we will also not worry about the state of our souls when that day comes.  We will be able to greet the Lord with joy and not dismay.

To better achieve this close union with God there are several things we can do as Catholics this month to draw nearer to Jesus Christ.  First off, take some time to pray this Advent Season.  If you are unsure as to how to pray, I suggest picking up one of the Advent prayer booklets that are available in the church narthex.  These booklets include a short daily spiritual reflection that can be a good starting point for prayer.  If you need to carve out some time in your schedule for prayer, I suggest coming to the special Eucharistic Afternoon of Prayer this coming Saturday, December 9th from 2pm to 5pm.  You can come for the entire afternoon of prayer or just a part depending on your schedule.  I also suggest going to confession this Advent Season and making it a priority to come to Sunday Mass this month of December.  The Sacraments are a close encounter with God and one of the best ways of drawing near to God in mind and soul.  Finally, take the time to read the Holy Scripture this Advent Season.  Since we are preparing for Christmas, I suggest reading and praying over the Infancy Narratives in the Gospels of Matthew and Luke (you can pick one of the Gospels).  Rereading the account of the birth of our Savior Jesus Christ can help to remind us why we as Christians look forward with such joy to Christmas.  It can also help us to remain focused on Jesus this month when so many events in the world around us seek to distract us from Christ.

Yours in Christ,

Fr. Stephen Eickhoff