Dear Brothers and Sisters,
Today is the First Sunday of Advent, and the first day of a new Church Year, as we complete our 12th day in this preliminary period of 12 days “emptying ourselves of the spirit of the world which is opposed to the spirit of Jesus,” we are earnestly preparing to consecrate ourselves totally to Jesus through Mary. In his Treatise on “True Devotion”, St. Louis de Montfort wrote:
- I have said that this devotion could rightly be called a perfect renewal of the vows and promises of holy baptism. Before baptism every Christian was a slave of the devil because he belonged to him. At baptism he has either personally or through his sponsors solemnly renounced Satan, his seductions and his works. He has chosen Jesus as his Master and sovereign Lord and undertaken to depend upon him as a slave of love. This is what is done in the devotion I am presenting to you. We renounce the devil, the world, sin and self, as expressed in the act of consecration, and we give ourselves entirely to Jesus through Mary. We even do something more than at baptism, when ordinarily our god-parents speak for us and we are given to Jesus only by proxy. In this devotion we give ourselves personally and freely and we are fully aware of what we are doing.
Whether we are making this journey of 33 days to renew our consecration or to consecrate ourselves for the first time as a kind of “Christmas gift” for Christ, it can be a “new beginning” for us. In fact each day is a new beginning for God’s graces are new everyday. By God’s Grace through Mary’s intercession, let us heed today’s Gospel as we continue our journey:
Jesus said to his disciples:
"Be watchful! Be alert!
> You do not know when the time will come.
It is like a man traveling abroad.
He leaves home and places his servants in charge,
each with his own work,
and orders the gatekeeper to be on the watch.
you do not know when the Lord of the house is coming,
whether in the evening, or at midnight,
or at cockcrow, or in the morning.
May he not come suddenly and find you sleeping.
> What I say to you, I say to all: ‘Watch!’" (MK 13:33-37)