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Friday, December 20, 2013

ADVENT IS AN OPPORTUNITY FOR SPIRITUAL GROWTH

By Julita, SOCCOM Tawau
Holy Trinity Parish Tawau  14th December 2013 : Advent is always an opportunity for all to prepare spiritually for Christmas, ready for the coming of Jesus Christ. The Church celebrates Lent as the apex of the  Catholic Liturgical year, the  history of God’s compassion and mercy whereas Advent is another opportunity that leads us to the history of Salvation, the mystery of God made man.
During Advent, we keep close to God. We recall the beautiful plan of God Almighty, pray that it will remain in us, embrace us and save us. Yet there are others who chose otherwise, to ignore the presence of God in their life.
In Luke 1 :  38, "Then Mary said, I am the handmaid of the Lord, let it be done to me as you have said." The broken bridge between God and human is beautifully formed and the love of God flows through the acceptance of our Lady, the Mother of our Savior. Could there be any salvation for us if Mary withdraws herself from this wonderful plan of God?
Msgr. Nicholas Ong, the rector, in his homily during the 3rd Sunday of Advent on 14th December said, "Jesus Christ is our loving Savior. He comes not to judge but to save us sinners. He is the merciful Messiah. So the joyous news is that God comes to man and brings us to the promised salvation." 
Some 200 carollers from the various Church groups and BECs who had atttended a one-day recollection a week before, were commissioned during the Eucharistic celebration.  The annual home carolling begins 15th - 19th December 2013.
Some 800 faithful; priests, religious, laity and all carollers, both from the main Parish and BEC groups gathered at the Parish Hall for the 'Carol by Candle Light' event, a preparation for the Home carolling, the following evening.
The 4 weeks of Advent provide us an opportunity personally to prepare ourselves to welcome Christ in our hearts in peace and joy. Let us reflect on the BIG opportunity given us by God especially during this season that we may be fully aware and prepare our inner self to welcome Christ in our family for love is born on Christmas day.

  • The opportunity to repent and to open our heart to believe that indeed the Saviour has been born for us
  • Giving us the opportunity to reconcile with our family members, friends, and those whom we have hurt and most of all with GOD
  • The opportunity to purify ourselves that we will welcome Christ in peace and that peace will convert us to a new and committed person to follow Christ our Creator and Savior
  • The opportunity to become the instrument of peace : by proclaiming the Good News to others through carols , we are bringing  the joy that calm the anxious heart and comfort the restless for God is love.
  • Opportunity to be the light of God’s love and peace to touch the hearts of those who have gone astray from God.
Christmas is about peace and joy. Let us share this season with others for we are the tongue and the lip of God, bringing and sharing the Good News.

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