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23 December 2012: Fourth Sunday of Advent

Christmas anticipation is in the air. Family reunions and Christmas gatherings are in full swing. There is the possibility of change as the world glimpses peace. The innate goodness of human life is celebrated as God becomes one of us. But how strange are the ways of our God!

Mary is a Jew, a woman, pregnant, unmarried and poor. Yet of her it is said, "Blessed are you among women."  Because she received the word of God in a spirit of openness and obedience, God could do great things in her. How strange are the ways of God!

Today’s readings combine the major Advent themes – promise, change, renewal, hope – as they look towards Christmas.

We are on the edge looking in. A sense of anticipation is everywhere.