This weekend we celebrate the Fourth Sunday of Advent. In the gospel reading below, we read the story of how Jesus’ birth came about, and we read of Joseph’s faithful acceptance of the message brought to him by the angel of the Lord. Mary and Joseph are examples to us of saying “yes” to God and his plan. The story of the birth of Jesus reminds us that “God is with us” today and we are called to be his living presence in the world today.
While we do not read much about Joseph in the scripture, his faith is so very evident in this week’s gospel reading. In faith, Joseph took Mary into his home as his wife, and he welcomed Jesus into his life.
As we continue to prepare ourselves for Christmas, we ask God to be close to us. In the midst of these busy days, may we remember that “God is with us.”
Gospel - Mt 1: 18-24
This is how the birth of Jesus Christ came about.
When his mother Mary was betrothed to Joseph,
but before they lived together,
she was found with child through the Holy Spirit.
Joseph her husband, since he was a righteous man,
yet unwilling to expose her to shame,
decided to divorce her quietly.
Such was his intention when, behold,
the angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said,
“Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary your wife into your home.
For it is through the Holy Spirit
that this child has been conceived in her.
She will bear a son and you are to name him Jesus,
because he will save his people from their sins.”
All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet:
Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son,
and they shall name him Emmanuel,
which means “God is with us.”
When Joseph awoke,
he did as the angel of the Lord had commanded him
and took his wife into his home.