It was the 2nd Sunday of Advent on 8 December 2013.
Here are the Readings that were read in the Eucharistic Celebrations all over the world on the same day (see previous page):
1st Reading: Isaiah 11:1-10,
Responsorial: Psalm 72:1-2, 7-8, 12-13, 17,
2nd Reading: Romans 15:4-9 &
Gospel Reading: Matthew 3:1-12 .
We have extracted the Homilies of Blessed Pope John Paul II, Pope Benedict XVI & Pope Francis I based on the aforesaid Readings to share with you, so that you could similarly be encouraged:
VISIT TO THE PARISH OF ST ROSE OF VITERBO IN ROME
HOMILY OF JOHN PAUL II
Second Sunday of Advent, 6 December 1998
1. "Prepare the way of the Lord" (Matthew 3:3). These words, taken from the book of the prophet Isaiah (cf. Isaiah 40:3), are spoken by John the Baptist, whom Jesus himself once described as the greatest among those born of woman (cf. Matthew 11:11). The Evangelist Matthew presents him as the Precursor, the one who received the mission of "preparing the way" for the Messiah.
His insistent invitation to repentance and conversion continues to resound in the world and urges believers, on their pilgrimage to the Jubilee of the Year 2000, to welcome worthily the Lord who comes. The third year of immediate preparation for the Jubilee has just begun and our spiritual journey must gain momentum.
Dear brothers and sisters, let us prepare to meet Christ! Let us prepare the way for him in our hearts and in our communities. The figure of the Baptist, who is simply clad and lives on locusts and wild honey, is a powerful call to be watchful and to look for the Saviour's coming.
2. "There shall come forth a shoot from the stump of Jesse" (Isaiah 11:1). During the season of Advent, the liturgy highlights another great figure: the prophet Isaiah, who kept alive the hopeful expectation of the entire chosen people for the coming of the promised Saviour. As we heard in the first reading, Isaiah describes the Messiah as a shoot that springs from the ancient stump of Jesse. On him the Spirit of God will rest in its fullness, and his kingdom will be characterized by the reestablishment of justice and the consolidation of universal peace.
We too need to renew this trusting expectation of the Lord. Let us listen to the prophet's words. They invite us to look with hope to the definitive foundation of the kingdom of God, which he describes with highly poetic images that can shed light on the triumph of justice and peace to be brought about by the Messiah. "The wolf shall dwell with the lamb ... the calf and the lion and the fatling together, and a little child shall lead them" (Isaiah 11:6). These are symbolic expressions which anticipate the reality of universal reconciliation. We are all called to collaborate in this work of cosmic renewal, sustained by the certainty that one day all creation will be completely subject to the universal lordship of Christ.
3. Let us welcome with joy the message that today's liturgy communicates to us! Dear brothers and sisters of the Parish of St Rose of Viterbo, I greet you all with great affection. I greet the Cardinal Vicar, the Auxiliary Bishop of the sector, your parish priest, Fr Maurizio Vismara, and the priests who work with him, members of the Congregation of Priests of the Sacred Heart of Jesus of Bétharram. I extend a cordial thought to Fr Pierino Donini, who was your parish priest for 35 years. I also greet the members of the recently established pastoral council and all who, in one way or another, are involved in the groups that enliven parish life.
Your community, which numbers about 10,000 souls, waited a long time for a suitable and definitive place to hold liturgical celebrations and pastoral activities. I rejoice with you today because at last you have a beautiful church, thanks to the generosity of the Sisters, Daughters of the Cross. In expressing to these dear religious sincere appreciation in the name of the Diocese for their previous hospitality to the parish and their generous donation a few years ago, I wish them a fruitful apostolate in the school, following the shining example of their holy founders, André Hubert Fournet and Jeanne Élizabeth Bichier des Ages.
I greet the superiors and students of the Scots College, which is based in the territory of the parish, as well as the Sisters of the Sorrowful Mother who run the nursery school and the "Ancilla Domini" nursery.
I would like to address a special thought to the personnel, teachers and pupils of the Catholic schools present in the area. My thanks go to all those who work in them, for their daily commitment and for the educational enthusiasm with which they follow their pupils, in close collaboration with the families. The educational project and specific identity inspired by the Gospel make the Catholic school a real educational community, open to acceptance and interreligious and intercultural dialogue among all students, for their full human, spiritual and social development.
4. Dear brothers and sisters, in coming to visit you, I have been able to note the fruits that through the City Mission the grace of the Lord is producing in your community. I thank God for the good results of this great apostolic initiative proposed to the city. This year the Mission involves the areas of life and work and, within this parish, there are important work centres.
I am also aware that in this neighbourhood the population in general is characterized by quite a high social and economic level. While I hope that this comfortable life-style will be an incentive to a more widely shared solidarity, I invite all the parishioners to become more involved in the mission. The proclamation of the Gospel must be taken wherever man works, suffers, studies and rests. Every environment is important for evangelization, so closely connected with man's overall development. Christ must be proclaimed everywhere! It is only in this way that the Christian community can effectively prepare for the Great Jubilee of the Year 2000.
5. "Welcome one another ... as Christ has welcomed you" (Romans 15:7). In pointing out to us the profound meaning of Advent, St Paul emphasizes the need for acceptance and brotherhood in every family and community. To welcome Christ and open our hearts to our brothers: this is our daily task, to which the spiritual climate of this liturgical season spurs us.
The Apostle continues: "May the God of steadfastness and encouragement grant you to live in such harmony with one another, in accord with Christ Jesus, that together you may with one voice glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ" (Rom 15:5-6). May Advent and the approaching celebration of the birth of Jesus strengthen this sense of unity and communion in every believer.
May Mary, the Virgin of listening and acceptance, accompany us during Advent, and guide us to be credible and generous witnesses to the saving love of God.
JOHN PAUL II
Sunday, 9 December 2001
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
1. I have invited Catholics to take part in a day of fasting next Friday, 14 December, to implore God for a stable peace that is based on justice. This initiative has also found support among the faithful of other religions, particularly Jews and Muslims, as well as among many persons of good will.
In today's complex international situation, humanity is called to mobilize its best energies so that love may prevail over hatred, peace over war, truth over falsehood and forgiveness over revenge.
2. Peace or violence spring up in the human heart over which God alone has power. Convinced of this, believers have always used, against the most serious dangers, the weapons of fasting and prayer, along with concrete works of charity.
Fasting expresses sorrow for a serious misfortune, but also the intention of taking a certain responsibility by confessing our sins and being resolved to turn our hearts and actions to greater justice toward God and neighbour. By fasting, we acknowledge with confident humility that true personal and social renewal can only come from God, on whom we are all totally dependent. Beyond false forms of pietism or manipulative assistance, fasting makes it possible to share our daily bread with those who are without.
While I hope that the entire People of God will be able to fast next Friday in a spirit of faith, humility and meekness, I thank the diocesan pastors for the careful way in which they are preparing for this day in their communities.
Moreover, the date of 14 December coincides with the end of Ramadan, during which the followers of Islam express their submission to the One God through fasting. I fervently hope that our common attitude of religious repentance will increase reciprocal understanding between Christians and Muslims who are called, today more than ever, to build justice and peace together.
May the Virgin Mary, whose feast we solemnly celebrated yesterday and who is also venerated with deep admiration by Muslims, help us, and obtain peace for the whole world.
After leading the Angelus, the Holy Father expressed the hope that all countries would enforce legislation to protect refugees as they grow in number. He also mentioned the forthcoming Mass he would celebrate for university students in Rome.
Over the next few days, the representatives of 140 signatory States will meet in Geneva to reaffirm the Convention of 1951 on the "status" of refugees and its Protocol of 1967. I hope that all the nations will put into force legal protection for these persons, who are unfortunately very numerous and are forced to flee from their own countries, as well as for the so-called "internal refugees". May their common solicitude bring to an end the serious violations of human rights that are the origin of this forced movement.
In addition, the "European Forum of University Students" is taking place in Rome these days on the theme: "A Culture for Europe". As I greet the European university students who have gathered for this important meeting, I invite them to take part, together with their Roman colleagues, in the traditional Holy Mass I will be celebrating at 5: 00 p.m. next Tuesday, in St Peter's Basilica.
JOHN PAUL II
Second Sunday of Advent, 5 December 2004
1. We are preparing to celebrate with profound joy the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary, which this year acquires special significance. Indeed, we will be commemorating the 150th anniversary of the proclamation of this important Marian Dogma.
2. We will commemorate this anniversary this coming 8 December with a solemn Eucharistic Celebration in the Vatican Basilica, where my venerable Predecessor, Blessed Pius IX, proclaimed the Dogma of the Immaculate Conception in 1854 together with a multitude of Bishops from every part of the world. In this way we will honour the Tota pulchra (All Fair), the One God chose to be the Mother of his only-begotten Son.
3. In the afternoon I will then go to Piazza di Spagna, as I do every year, for the traditional tribute to the Immaculate Virgin.
I invite you all, dear Romans and pilgrims, to join me in this act of filial veneration for our heavenly Mother.
After leading the recitation of the Angelus the Holy Father said:
I extend a special Advent greeting to the German-speaking pilgrims and visitors. I would like in particular to welcome the group from the Parish of Graz-Sankt Peter. May God's grace go with you!
I greet the Spanish-speaking pilgrims, especially those from "Colegio Claret" in Madrid. May Mary, Mother of Hope, guide your life in this season of Advent. Many thanks!
I greet the Salesian Provincials present at the Angelus with their Rector Major. Dear friends, through you my thoughts reach out to the entire Salesian Family, which I cordially bless.
I then greet the Italian-speaking pilgrims and in particular the organizers and animators of the "Days for Italian Cooperation in Development" and the groups of the faithful who have come from Melfi, Lavello and Catanzaro.
I wish you all a good Sunday.
Acknowledgment: We thank the Vatican Publisher for allowing us to publish the Homilies of Blessed Pope John Paul II, so that it could be accessed by more people all over the world; as a source of God’s encouragements to all of us.
15 December 2013