Letter from the pastor
Dearest Friends in Christ,
Today is Gaudete Sunday! This day receives it name from the Introit (Entrance Antiphon) of today’s liturgy, which begins in the Latin translation of St. Paul’s letter to the Philippians 4:4-5 “Gaudate” (Rejoice). As the liturgy traditionally would have begun with this antiphon, so was set in the hearts of the faithful the tone of joyful expectation for the Lord’s birth and Second Coming.
Such sounds of joy resonating in our hearts naturally elates our entire being, a sign of which is found in our rosy cheeks, and so to further show forth such immense joy, the priest wears rose colored vestments.
Also we light a rose colored candle on the Third Sunday of Advent as a recognition that we have completed more than half of the Advent Season, which fills us with much joy. In other words, our joy comes from the fact that the Light of World, the Son of God, is ever closer in breaking through the darkness in which the world found itself before Christ’s coming in Bethlehem.
And so as we seek to observe today’s call to “rejoice”, let us contemplate the words of St. Anselm of Canterbury as he meditated on the mystery of God, “For I have found a joy that is full, and more than full. For when heart, and mind, and soul, and all the man, are full of that joy, joy beyond measure will still remain. Therefore, the whole of that joy shall not enter into those who rejoice; rather, they who rejoice shall enter fully into that joy.”
Pax et bonum,
Fr. Justin R. Ferguson