Bible Corner

The third Sunday of Advent is traditionally known as ‘Gaudete’ Sunday, or ‘Rejoicing’ Sunday. In our scripture today we get a sense of what it means through the prophet Zephaniah and Saint Paul. The passage from Zephaniah begins with; “Shout for joy, daughter of Zion, Israel, shout aloud. Rejoice, exult with all your hear, daughter of Jerusalem;” Then he explains why. St. Paul, writing to the Philippians, is a little more restrained but captures what today is about; “I want you to be happy, always happy in the Lord; I repeat, what I want is your happiness.” Then, he goes on to elaborate where that happiness comes from. John the Baptist is ‘preparing the way’ and addressing the questions of the crowd. We are told in the Gospel that there was an air of expectancy among the people. John helped to raise that expectancy in the way he interacted. Joy, happiness and hope — all at play today — ‘Rejoicing’ Sunday.