Third Sunday of Advent
In many Latin American communities, today is the beginning of Las Posadas–reenactments of the Holy Family's journey to Bethlehem. Posadas are celebrated in Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador and other Latin American countries. Usually neighborhoods get together to reenact the pilgrimage of Joseph and Mary before the birth of Jesus as a way to prepare their hearts for the nativity of our Lord. They go from house to house singing traditional Advent and Christmas carols or villancicos, knocking on every door, but everyone turns them down until they find one house that gives them shelter. Some parishes in the United States also celebrate this tradition as a way to pass on this tradition to young children. They are celebrated starting December 16.
"You shall treat the alien who resides with you no differently than the natives born among you; you shall love the alien as yourself; for you too were once aliens in the land of Egypt. I, the LORD, am your God." (Leviticus 19:34)
As many throughout the world begin honoring the journey of Mary and Joseph in search of shelter with Las Posadas, pray for migrants who are searching for shelter at the US border and around the world today.
Today is Gaudete Sunday, when we shift our reflection from "the Lord is coming" to "the Lord is near." Rejoice as you light the pink candle on your Advent wreath. You are more than halfway to Christmas!