2nd Sunday of Advent C21
John the Baptizer was at the midpoint of salvation history between the end of the promises of a Messiah and the beginning of their fulfillment. Like all prophets before him, he called people to get ready to meet their God who was coming into the world. This God was none too happy with them and their lives, their society, and even their religion because multiple injustices abounded, especially against the helpless, the poor, and the sick. John called the people to make a new start, a new beginning, through a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. John was calling them to a better future.
How do we make ready the way of the Lord, clear him a straight path? How will live in expectation of the salvation of God?
First, we must be awake, awake from anything that causes us to sleep walk through our lives and to what really matters, i.e., our being accountable to God.
Secondly, we must be dissatisfied. This doesn’t mean we constantly complain or become cynical. It means having a holy discontent rather than saying, “Oh well. That’s just the way the world works.”
Pope Francis last year wrote a book called: “LET US DREAM, THE PATH TO A BETTER FUTURE. In it, he posits that the Coronavirus has revealed “that the categories and assumptions that we used before to navigate our world are no longer effective.” Further, “it is an illusion to think that we can go back to where we were.”
The pandemic has exacerbated the divisions between rich and poor people and nations, especially with the distribution of vaccines and booster shots. In our country, it revealed how the elderly are treated in the many nursing homes that are short on staff. It also has shown us the weaknesses in our health care system; in our economy; our personal freedom to choose and how it affects others; in our fear, real or perceived, of migrants, nationalities (especially non-European), different religious beliefs, and our tendency to a type of “tribalism” or “populism”.
What’s the solution? I’m not sure. But, it means that we must dream big. It means we live with hope for the present and the future; not mourning for what was but learning from it what can be. Pope Francis closes his book with a poem. It is entitled “HOPE” and was written by Alexis Valdés, a Cuban actor and comedian in Miami.
Let us dream! And, more importantly, act!
 Let Us Dream, p. 54.
 Idem. p.54
 Idem. pp. 139-140. He wrote it one sitting without making any correction or changing any words.