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First Reading

Isaiah 63:16b-17; 64:1, 3b-8

1. We are the clay and you the potter.

Who made the beautiful “clay pot” to which this Reading and Pope Francis are referring?

Without the Church—believe me—I would not have been able to encounter Jesus, even with the awareness that the immense gift of faith is kept in the fragile clay pots of our humanity.

Pope Francis responds to a Non Believer

2. “ … that we were mindful of you in our ways!”

Is there a veil that keeps you from seeing God’s presence at work in your life and in your world? How can you use Advent to lift that veil, to get more in touch with God in and around you?


Second Reading
1 Corinthians 1:3-9

1. St. Paul’s concern here is to make sure you are ready for life with God after death. Is there life with God before your death? Explain. If you feel sometimes that, indeed, “you are … lacking in … spiritual gifts,” what could you do during Advent to restart, to recover the goals of your existence?

2. St. Paul also says “that in him you were enriched in every way.” In what ways has God enriched you personally? To say Paul’s words in another way, his gift to us is the blessing of everything in him. What richness in Christ is he passing on to you?


Gospel

Mark 13:33-37

1. As vigilant gatekeepers watching for the Lord of the house, what signs do you observe that tell you God is present in the world and in your life?

2.  As gatekeepers we are responsible for the preservation of God’s gift of the earth. What is the Church’s responsibility in the maintenance of the earth’s life? The Iowa Catholic Conference is sponsoring a plan for clean water: what is your responsibility in such plans?

Anne Osdieck
Art by Martin Erspamer, OSB
from Religious Clip Art for the Liturgical Year (A, B, and C). This art may be reproduced only by parishes who purchase the collection in book or CD-ROM form. For more information go http://www.ltp.org