Fourth Monday of Advent





December 23, 2019 

WORD of the DAY  

When the time arrived for Elizabeth to have her child she gave birth to a son.  Her neighbors and relatives heard that the Lord had shown his great mercy toward her, and they rejoiced with her.  When they came on the eighth day to circumcise  the child, they were going to call him Zechariah after his father, but his mother said in reply, “No. He will be called John.”  But they answered her, “There is no one among your relatives who has this name.”  So they made signs, asking his father what he wished him to be called.  He asked for a tablet and wrote, “John is his name,” and all were amazed.  Immediately his mouth was opened, his tongue freed, and he spoke blessing God.  Then fear came upon all their neighbors, and all these matters were discussed throughout the hill country of Judea.  All who heard these things took them to heart, saying, “What, then, will this child be?” For surely the hand of the Lord was with him.     (Luke 1: 57-66)


How shall I live this Word?

Today, the Gospel presents us with the circumstance of the birth of John the Baptist.   Elizabeth gives birth to a son, John, and after eight days, at the time of circumcision, they must give him a name.  Zachariah his father is mute and thus they ask his mother to indicate his name.  She says, ‘John’, and then they ask his father to indicate the name.  He writes on a tablet, ‘John’ and immediately his voice returns and he blesses God.

This event  orients history in a new direction.  The Word of God must also become the human word that praises God for the marvels He works.  Today’s Gospel ends with the phrase, “For surely the hand of the Lord  was with him.”  Truly, the Lord is always present with His power (symbolized by the hand) in the personal and community history of every human being.  It depends on us to be docile and to accomplish His holy will in our life.

O Lord, You are always close to us, help us to understand and to do Your will because it is the only way to be happy.

The voice of the Psalmist, 24/25: 4-5

Lord, make me know Your ways, teach me Your paths.  Guide me in fidelity to You and instruct me, for You are the God of my salvation.


Daughters of Mary Help of Christians, Via dell’Ateneo Salesiano 81, 00139 Rome, Italy E-mail:  Website:

Blog:      Comment by Fr. Mario Maritano SDB

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