“So too, you must also be prepared, for at an hour you do not expect, the Son of Man will come.”
The closing sentence of today’s Gospel reading from Matthew is an ideal start for our Advent season. As Catholics we are embarking on our journey of reflection and preparation for the birth of Christ. It is a truly beautiful time of year in our spiritual calendar and it serves as a much-needed balance to the secular traditions that can distract all of us at this time of year. I am not one to get on a soap box and preach against the material side of the Christmas season. I find that tactic counter productive as it is virtually impossible to push back the tide of secularism. Instead, as a spiritual people, we need to focus on the Advent season and prepare ourselves and others for the coming of Christ. It should not be lost on any of us that the North Shore Mall has a church—the Carmelite Chapel; so, too, does the Prudential Center—the St. Francis Chapel. In two hot beds of our material culture, there are no fewer than two daily masses, hours for confession and hours of adoration of the Blessed Sacrament. Many years ago, the Catholic Church had the wisdom to establish a sanctuary of faith within the noise and confusion of commercialism. As is stated in the second reading from the book of Psalms, “our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed” so let us stay awake and be prepared as we embark on our Advent season. Salvation is always in stock at the Carmelite and Saint Francis Chapels and the price is right.
—Mike McShane, P'18 '20