Our Great Journey
This week our theme is “Prepare the Way”/ “Prepara el Camino” based on Mark 1:1-8/ Marcos 1:1-8
All pray the Sign of the Cross
Jesus, you are Emmanuel, God with us. Fill us with a spirit of love and generous service, so that we are ready to celebrate your coming at Christmas and our lives will reflect your Kingdom that will last forever when you come again. (Light candles for week 1 and 2 on your Advent wreath)
In addition to our prayers from the heart, our prayer for December is The Apostles’ Creed. Please pray these prayers daily to learn. (The Apostles’ Creed is a profession of faith that preceded the Nicene Creed at the Council of Nicaea in 325. The Apostles’ Creed is usually prayed when we begin the Rosary)
Using the Bible, invite a family member to read the Gospel aloud.
Things to talk about:
- How is John the Baptist preparing people for the coming of Jesus? How are you preparing for the coming of Jesus?
- What is the difference between John’s baptism and Jesus’ baptism?
- What is Mark telling us by associating John with Isaiah?
- What is one way Jesus is calling you to be a witness to his presence in the world?
Things to do:
- Purple is the liturgical color in the Advent season. Where do you see purple in your church?
- This week we celebrate Our Lady of Guadalupe, December 12, St. Lucy, December 13, St John of the Cross, December 14. Ask someone to research one of these superheroes and share their story at dinner. Lots of activities HERE if you’re feeling inspired.
- 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 or the nativity story.
Our Lady of Guadalupe
December 12th is the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe. To prepare for this awesome day, read this account of her apparition to St. Juan Diego.
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Imagine how people felt as they listened to John the Baptist. Place yourself at the Jordan River. What are people saying to one another? How are they reacting? What do you say and do? The description of John’s clothing and his diet clearly separate John from most who lived in Judea. This distinctiveness is a sign of John’s unique call. He is the last prophet of the Old Testament. Looking at other Old Testament prophets, like Isaiah, show that each of them was “different.” The prophet is called by God to tell it like it really is…most of the prophets were controversial people.
The beginning of Mark’s Gospel focuses on John, the last of the prophets, the one who points to the Messiah even before his birth (from the womb of his mother Elizabeth). Mark doesn’t include the infancy narratives found in Matthew and Luke, instead he begins with a verse from Isaiah, pointing to the one who prepares the way of the Lord.
Isaiah is one of the great prophets in the Old Testament. His prophecies prepared people for the coming of a savior. The Gospel writers show us that everything that happened through Jesus and to Jesus was foretold, even before Jesus began his ministry. John preached a baptism of repentance, those he baptized “died” to a way of life that was darkened by sin and resolved to live a different way. John’s message and his “pointing” to Jesus is the call of Advent.
Did you know…That John the Baptist was Jesus’ cousin? He was born to Zechariah and Elizabeth, who was though to be too old to have a child. Mary visited her cousin Elizabeth when both were pregnant, and John leapt in Elizabeth’s womb, the first to testify to Jesus. As a grown man, John also testified to the coming of Christ.