On this ‘Gaudete Sunday’ we are called to celebrate with joy. It is a Sunday of rejoicing. The entrance song for some centuries was always from the Letter to the Philippians: Rejoice in the Lord always! Again, I say, rejoice. Looking at 2023 so far, you might rightly say: can we really REJOICE this year? How do bring light to the poor, the brokenhearted and those imprisoned? Can I honestly be joyful today?
The honest answer, as followers of a God of joy, is that we should rejoice. We are called, especially on this day, to be a sign of contradiction, to be counter-cultural—just as the prophets were, down through history. It means that we must stay positive during these days, even though it might so difficult. Our positivity might be just the antidote that our family and friends need at this time. Like John the Baptist, we are called to point to a better way, a way that brings life. As we light yet another candle on our wreath, let it be symbolic of our growing acceptance of this way of peace and joy.