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The Promised Land

December 23, 2013



Malachi emphasized how we have to be the way, the voice, and the instrument that God chose to speak to his people. He wants us to be convinced that we can do his will.

Are we prepared? Under the trails do we faithfully believe in Him, or do we look for other gods that can pull us out of trouble?

Today with so many distractions, such as technology, TV, the constant amenities, trials and tribulations etc., lead us away from God.


The Lord asks us to love, have compassion, and serve our neighbor, and therefore elevate our soul toward Him. God chose John to prepare for the arrival of his Son Jesus; and today He is calling us to follow him, to be the voice and to prepare for the return of the coming of Jesus Christ. That is why in this Advent our goal is to be like John, who against all the adversities and tribulations we have to be faithful to God. Face the world and their beliefs, which are not very humanitarian and are against the love of God.

That is why we pray for all those who do not know of God so that we may be the people who show them to a living Jesus full of love and mercy and lead them to the Promised Land.


Thought Questions


How am I living my communication/relationship with God? Am I an example or am I giving testimony in directing others to God?



Oh Lord, our God, help us do your will, guide and instruct us, may the Holy Spirit fill us with his love and compassion so that we can guide your chosen people to the Promised Land.  Give me the strength and peace that I need. Amen.


By Erica and Jesus Bravo




Reading 1    Mal 3: 1-4, 23-24


 I am sending my messenger to prepare the way before me; And suddenly there will come to the temple the LORD whom you seek, And the messenger of the covenant whom you desire. Yes, he is coming, says the LORD of hosts.

But who will endure the day of his coming? And who can stand when he appears? For he is like the refiner's fire, or like the fuller's lye.

He will sit refining and purifying (silver), and he will purify the sons of Levi, Refining them like gold or like silver that they may offer due sacrifice to the LORD.

Then the sacrifice of Judah and Jerusalem will please the LORD, as in days of old, as in years gone by.

I will send you Elijah, the prophet, Before the day of the LORD comes, the great and terrible day,

To turn the hearts of the fathers to their children, and the hearts of the children to their fathers, Lest I come and strike the land with doom.  I will send you Elijah, the prophet, Before the day of the LORD comes, the great and terrible day.


Responsorial Psalm: PS 25: 4-5AB, 8-9, 10 & 14


R. Make known to me your ways, LORD; teach me your paths.

Guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my savior.

For you I wait all the long day, because of your goodness, LORD.

R. Make known to me your ways, LORD; teach me your paths.

Good and upright is the LORD, who shows sinners the way,

R. Make known to me your ways, LORD; teach me your paths.

Guides the humble rightly, and teaches the humble the way.

R. Make known to me your ways, LORD; teach me your path.

All the paths of the LORD are faithful love toward those who honor the covenant demands.

R. Make known to me your ways, LORD; teach me your paths.

They live well and prosper, and their descendants inherit the land.


Gospel: LK: 1 57-66


When the time arrived for Elizabeth to have her child she gave birth to a son.

Her neighbors and relatives heard that the Lord had shown his great mercy toward her, and they rejoiced with her.

When they came on the eighth day to circumcise the child, they were going to call him Zechariah after his father, but his mother said in reply, "No. He will be called John."

But they answered her, "There is no one among your relatives who has this name."

So they made signs, asking his father what he wished him to be called.

He asked for a tablet and wrote, "John is his name," and all were amazed.

Immediately his mouth was opened, his tongue freed, and he spoke blessing God.

Then fear came upon all their neighbors, and all these matters were discussed throughout the hill country of Judea.

All who heard these things took them to heart, saying, "What, then, will this child be?" For surely the hand of the Lord was with him.

Tags: advent retreat, online advent retreat, st agatha, the promised land, erica and jesus bravo, malachi, the way, the voice, the instrument


Fr. Bill  |  LA  |  December 23, 2013  |  12:25 PM

"...turning hearts of the fathers (Traditon) to their children (the NEW generation) and the hearts of the children to their fathers..."  This is the perennial work of religion...helping a 2000 year old Tradition to see the good and the wonderful in the latest generation of arrivals, and helping them to see the richness of the Tradition. And the Gospel reminds us that in each age, God is always doing something "new," just to keep us on our toes! Thank you Erica and Jesus for focusing us on directing ourselves to others--it is through our example and our kindness that a new generation will learn the beauty of the ancient ways of our faith.

Sr. Karen  |  Los Angeles  |  December 23, 2013  |  12:04 PM

God works in such mysterious ways. None of us want to accept pain or discomfort. But we see in both reading how people are blessed if they believe and accept what god has on store for us. Hard times make the good ones look so much better!

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