Once again, we begin another liturgical year with this first Sunday of Advent. And with this new liturgical year, we begin reading again from another one of the four Evangelists as our primary guide in St. Luke’s Gospel.
St. Luke, the tradition tells us, was a physician and was a companion of St. Paul. Luke has written most of the New Testament, with his Gospel as well as the Acts of the Apostles, which details the story of the early Church and its growth.
Here’s some things to look for in St. Luke’s Gospel as we progress through this new liturgical year:
- The Role of the Blessed Virgin Mary – St. Luke gives us details of the Lord Jesus’ life that can only come from the perspective of the Lord’s Mother. The Nativity in his Gospel, unlike that of St. Matthew’s Gospel (who tells the story from St. Joseph’s side), is all from Our Blessed Mother.
- The Role of Mercy – St. Luke emphasizes the Lord Jesus, not as Matthew does as the fulfillment of the Old Testament, but as the Holy One of God who manifests mercy in Himself to the poor and the sick.
- The Role of Women – St. Luke tells the story of some strong female followers of the Lord. These women are not Apostles, but real disciples of the Lord. From Elizabeth to Martha and Mary, women are very much in the forefront of the Gospel.
- The Role of Parables – The British novelist, Charles Dickens, described one of St. Luke’s parables, that of the Prodigal Son, as the greatest short story ever written! Watch for these beautiful stories that the Lord Jesus tells His disciples.
- The Role of the Gentiles – Just as St. Matthew shows the Lord Jesus as the One who has come to the Lost Sheep of the House of Israel, note the number of times the Lord deals with the Gentiles in this Gospel, bringing the message of His coming to the whole world!
Yes, this Advent is exciting, bringing with it a new chance to hear the Gospel, ever so ancient, ever so new as St. Augustine says, once again!
Keep your ears open to St. Luke’s version, beginning this Sunday!