Today is Gaudete Sunday, the Third Sunday of Advent. Today we light the pink, or rose, candle on the Advent wreath. It is called Gaudete Sunday because of the opening antiphon of the Introit Gaudete in Domino semper (Rejoice in the Lord always). The opening words of the entrance antiphon from Philippians 4 are these, “Rejoice in the Lord always; again I say, rejoice.”
In today’s first reading, we see the Lord saying through the prophet Isaiah, "The desert and the parched land will exult; the steppe will rejoice and bloom."
Rejoice (gaudete) is a theme in today’s readings. We see the word in the first reading and the theme in the second reading. Rejoicing needs to be more than just something we do when something good happens to us. Rejoicing needs to be a way of life. Not just now and again, but, as St. Paul says, “Rejoice ALWAYS!”
Father, make us each day a people of rejoicing. Help us to see Your will being carried out in our lives. Amen.