Advent - What are we waiting for?

One of the words we hear in, around and about Advent is 'waiting'. Why?

Our world surrounds us with the message that there are many things to do and a great many things to buy before Christmas. "There's not much time left… no time to wait! Get busy!"

God is always with us - that is what Emmanuel means (God-with-us) - perhaps we don't need to focus on waiting for God. Perhaps this year we might focus on the reality that it is God who waits for us. ©GPBS

Image © Dorothy Woodward rsj Emmaus Images


Advent and Christmas Liturgies

During the season of Christmas and Advent (which begins this Sunday) many families look forward to participating in parish liturgies. For liturgies in some of our local parishes, please follow the link:

Sacrament Program Diary

If you have a child in Years 2, 3 or 5 who will be celebrating the sacraments next year, check your local parish for details of their Sacrament Programs. Please note further information below.

Holy Spirit Parish, City Beach

Now accepting enrolments for 2015 Sacrament Program.

Closing date for enrolments: February 5, 2015 to prepare for the upcoming Sacraments.

For enrolment forms please download from this link:

Further information please contact Michelle Rapkoch at: or 0405556026.

Holy Rosary Nedlands

Catholic Parents wishing to present a child to receive a sacrament of initiation during 2015 (Reconciliation, Eucharist, Confirmation), and whose home parish is Holy Rosary Nedlands.

You are required to attend:-

Parents' Information and Registration Meeting

either Wednesday 11th February, 7.30-8.30pm

or Saturday 14th February, 11.00am-12.00pm

in the parish centre.

Further details:-

Parish noticeboards

9386 1870

Where can I find information regarding the Sacrament Program in my parish?

THIS SUNDAY'S GOSPEL: 2nd Sunday of Advent

Mark 1:1-8 - Make straight the paths of the Lord

This Sunday's Gospel reflection is an extract from the work of Greg Sunter.

John the Baptist - fulfilling the prophecies of Isaiah

This week's gospel captures beautifully the spirit of preparation and waiting that characterises the liturgical season of Advent. John the Baptist is portrayed as fulfilling the prophecies of Isaiah and others as the one who comes before the Lord preparing the way. He is a messenger, sent by God to 'do the groundwork' preparing the people for the coming of the Christ. Although this passage is used during Advent as preparation for the celebration of the birth of Jesus, we know that John was a contemporary (indeed cousin) of Jesus and the time of preparation was immediately prior to Jesus' public ministry.

The Wilderness

John appeared in the wilderness, proclaiming a baptism for forgiveness of sins. It may seem odd to think of going to the wilderness to try to influence people. Today we might think that the city centre or street corner might be the better venue to preach something. What is it about the wilderness? Reference is made to the wilderness several times in scripture. It is used as a place of preparation and encounter with God. The wilderness referred to was a vast expanse of emptiness on the eastern side of the Jordan River. It was not uncommon for wandering preachers like John and Jesus to go out into the wilderness as a way of making a break from their previous life and getting themselves ready in body and spirit to begin their ministry. The wilderness to the east of the Jordan was also the place in which many of the rebels based themselves. There was a sense that challenge and unrest came out of the wilderness. In many ways that is what Jesus - heralded by John - brought out of the wilderness as well.

Preparing the Way

The gospel passage quotes the prophet Isaiah and casts John the Baptist in the role of fulfilling the prophecy of the voice that cries in the wilderness, 'Prepare a way for the Lord'. The description of John in camel-skin and eating locusts and wild honey is designed to align him with Elijah, the great prophet of Jewish history. In a very short and sharp passage the gospel ties the coming of Jesus to the expectation of a messiah that has run through Jewish history and been foretold by the great prophets.

Greg is a member of the Evangelisation and Spiritual Formation team with Brisbane Catholic Education and the author of books on adolescent faith.


Next Friday, 12th December, College community concludes the year with a joyful celebration of the Eucharist in the St Louis Sports Centre at 9:00. At this Mass we will induct our new altar servers. All parents are welcome to attend.

There will be NO community Mass that morning.

Next Community Mass Friday 6th February.