These Sundays before Christmas prepare us “to adore the King Who is to come.” They reveal the expectation of the ancient world in its long night of spiritual darkness. They reveal our hope that a prophesied Saviour will come.
Immediately, in the Introit, we put our trust in God, Who will not deceive us, imploring him to “show Thy ways” where we may meet Him. For His coming, “nearer than we believed,” in today’s Mass, the Epistle warns us to “rise from sleep” and “cast off works of darkness” and put on “the Lord Jesus.”
The Gospel, by picturing how we must accept Christ as King of Justice at His second Advent at the end of the world, indirectly prevails upon us to prepare now for His first coming, as King of Mercy.
Aware of the dangers ahead during this preparation, we invoke His Power in the Prayer, we offer this Sacrifice to be cleansed by His Power (Secret), and we promise to receive the Sacrament of His Mercy (Postcommunion).
During Advent, the ferias of the first and second weeks are of the III class, and if no feast of the III class or higher occurs, then the Mass of the prior Sunday of Advent is celebrated. Commemoration of the feria is made in every feast celebrated during Advent. Although sometimes known as ‘Little Lent’ in the past, the Season is actually joyful as we are looking forward to the birth of Our Divine Saviour.
May Thy sublime majesty fill me with holy fear.
May Thy power strengthen me in my ignorance.
May Thy goodness heal me of my malice.
May Thy mercy make me happy in my misery.
May Thy innocence purify me from all stain of sin.
May Thy purity destroy within me all sensuality.
May Thy simplicity direct all my thoughts towards God alone. O spirit of the Holy Infant, Jesus!
Be Thou my strength, my wisdom and my Love!
Be Thou my light, my life and my all! Teach me and convert me, lead me and direct me, now and for all eternity. Amen.