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December 6, 2020

Explore the Sunday Gospel


Prepare the way of the Lord!

MK 1:1-8

The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ the Son of God.

As it is written in Isaiah the prophet:
Behold, I am sending my messenger ahead of you;
he will prepare your way.  
A voice of one crying out in the desert:
“Prepare the way of the Lord,
make straight his paths."

John the Baptist appeared in the desert proclaiming a baptism of repentance
for the forgiveness of sins. People of the whole Judean countryside and all the inhabitants of Jerusalem were going out to him and were being baptized by him in the Jordan River as they acknowledged their sins. John was clothed in camel's hair, with a leather belt around his waist. He fed on locusts and wild honey. And this is what he proclaimed: “One mightier than I is coming after me. I am not worthy to stoop and loosen the thongs of his sandals. I have baptized you with water; he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit."


meet our extended family

St. Nicholas (Feast Day December 6)

MARCH 15, 270 - DECEMBER 6, 343

Nicholas was the fourth-century bishop of Myra, a city in Lycia, a province of Asia Minor. The best-known story about Nicholas concerns his charity toward a poor man who was unable to provide dowries for his three daughters of marriageable age. To help the family, Nicholas secretly tossed a bag of gold through the poor man’s window on three separate occasions, thus enabling the daughters to be married. Over the centuries, this particular legend evolved into the custom of gift-giving on the saint’s feast. In English-speaking countries, St. Nicholas became Santa Claus—further expanding the example of generosity portrayed by this holy bishop.


Take time to chat

• In what way is John the Baptist preparing people for the coming of Jesus?

• Share a time when you’ve prepared to welcome a special guest in your home. What things did you do to prepare?What things can you do to prepare for the coming of Jesus this Christmas?

• What is the difference between John’s baptism and Jesus’ baptism?


Recipe of the week

"Locusts" on a Log

In the Gospel today, we heard of John the Baptist living on "locusts (grasshoppers) and wild honey." For today's recipe, we can eat like he did!

Trim a stalk of celery and cut into 4-inch pieces.
Stop each end of the celery with a raisin.
Fill celery with honey.
Place “locusts”(raisins) on top of the honey.
Serve and enjoy!

Upgrade option: Order real edible locusts online to serve instead of raisins!


Family Fun

Movie Night!

Watch “Guadalupe: The Miracle and the Message,” by the Knights of Columbus. It is available on Amazon Prime. If unavailable, find another movie about Mary the Mother of God.


Other Ideas


Family Prayer

This coming Saturday is the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe. In order to prepare for this awesome day, read this account of her apparition to St. Juan Diego. After reading the story, pray one decade of the rosary together as a family.


On December 9, 1531, in Mexico, Our Lady appeared to Juan Diego, a poor humble Aztec Indian who had recently converted to the Catholic faith. She asked him to go to the Bishop and tell him to build a church where she said “I will show and offer all of my love, my compassion, my help and my protection to my people.”Juan Diego did as she asked, but the Bishop asked for a sign that this message was really from Our Lady.

Mary granted his request. On December 12, she showed Juan where the most beautiful Castilian roses were and told him to gather them. It was a miracle that the roses were there and in bloom because there was frost on the ground, and the ground was an infertile place where only cactus and thistles grew. After he gathered them, she helped arrange them in his tilma, or poncho, and told him to show them to the Bishop.

When he brought them to the Bishop, the Bishop was amazed at the roses, but was even more amazed at what began to happen to Juan Diego’s tilma. Right before their very eyes, the image of Our Lady began to form on the cloth. The picture of Mary was beautiful and the Bishop fell to his knees. He had the church built at her request.

The tilma is still intact after 470 years. The colors have not faded and the cloth has not deteriorated. It has been on display in the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe for all this time.

The manner in which Our Lady appeared on the tilma was very significant to the Aztec Indians. God had her dressed in a way that they would understand who she was. She was dressed in royal clothes that showed that she was very important, perhaps a queen. She also had the symbol of the cross at her neck which was the same symbol the Spaniards had on their ships and in the churches they built. She had a sash tied around her waist which meant that she was with child, for this was the way the Aztec women dressed when they were pregnant. And on her beautiful dress were all sorts of designs and flowers. But there was one flower on her dress that was very significant. It had only four petals. To the Aztecs, the four petal flower was the symbol for the true God, the God above all gods. This flower was located on her abdomen, right over the place where Jesus was growing inside of her. The Aztecs immediately understood that this was the mother of the true God!

his appearance of Our Lady of Guadalupe was very important to the history of our continent. You see, the Aztec Indians and the Spaniards were on the brink of war. The Aztec Indians’ culture and religion were very different from the Spaniards. They worshipped gods, to whom they would offer human sacrifices, often killing 50,000 people a year. The Spaniards, who were Catholic, were naturally disgusted by this. But they were cruel to the Aztecs too, treating them like animals and sometimes killing them for no reason. If a war had occurred, it would have been very brutal and the Spaniards and Christianity would have been totally wiped out.

Mary’s appearance changed everything, however. It helped the Indians to embrace Christianity and it helped the Spaniards to treat the Indians with respect and as human beings. In the course of seven years, 6,000,000 Indians converted to the Catholic faith. This was the biggest conversion in the history of the Church! This is why Our Lady of Guadalupe is the Patroness of the Americas. Juan Diego, the humble man to whom she appeared, was canonized in the summer of 2002.


Liturgy Link

Liga a la Liturgia

Locate the advent wreath in your church. How many candles were lit today? What do the candles symbolize?

Unleashing the Gospel in your Family

Haz Llegar el Evangelioen tu Familia

"Every human being, even if they are not aware of it, longs to be known and to be loved unconditionally. Everyone yearns for authentic happiness. Everyone wants to be secure in their identity, to be fulfilled as a human being, and to matter to others in some way. God himself has placed these desires in the human heart, and they can ultimately be fulfilled in Christ alone; anything less will fail to satisfy. That is why we who belong to Christ can never cease to propose him to those who do not yet know him.” (3.3 The Roots of the Crisis)

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Fun Facts!

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On December 12, the Church celebrates the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe. The appearance of Our Lady of Guadalupe put an end to the worship of stone gods and the ritual of human sacrifice among the Aztec people. We pray for Mary’s help today to bring an end to abortion and to convert non-believers. Our Lady of Guadalupe is also called the Patroness of the Unborn.