Advent: Time of Awaiting a God Who Loves Us

“Christ is the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. Thanks to him, the history of humanity proceeds as a pilgrimage toward the fulfillment of the Kingdom, which he himself inaugurated with his incarnation and victory over sin and death.” “Because of this, Advent is synonymous with hope: not the vain awaiting of a faceless god, but concrete and certain trust in the return of him who has already visited us, of the Spouse who has sealed a pact of eternal alliance with humanity in his blood.”

“The hope of Advent should stimulate vigilance, the characteristic virtue of this singular liturgical time. Vigilance in prayer, fostered by a loving expectation; vigilance in the dynamics of concrete charity, aware that the Kingdom of God comes close wherever men learn to live as brothers.”

“In days to come, the mountain of the Lord’s house shall be established as the highest mountain. … All nations shall stream toward it.” … “They shall beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks. One nation shall not raise the sword against another, nor shall they train for war again.”

“May the Immaculate Conception guide us on this way, helping every man and nation to look toward the mountain of the Lord, image of the final triumph of Christ and the advent of his Kingdom of peace.”

Pope John Paul II
Excerpt from a message given to Pilgrims at St. Peter’s Square
on the first day of Advent
Sunday, December 2, 2001