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3rd Sunday of Advent (Year: A)

Sun 15th
Dec

Old Testament: Isa. 35:1-6, 10
Psalms: Ps. 145:6-10
Epistle: James 5:7-10
Gospel: Matt. 11:2-11

Sunday Mass times

Sunday 8:00am 10:00am 6:00pm
See weekday Mass times

Whats Happening

15th
Dec

First Holy Communion Instruction Class

Instruction class for children registered on the 2020 First Holy Communion programme …

Welcome

Welcome to the web site for the parish of St. Mary Magdalen Ipswich we welcome all visitors and newcomers to the Church, and hope that you find everything you are looking for on this site. Our aim is to keep this web space up to date with current parish news, information and events, aiming to be accessible for the people of the parish and the community in which we are situated.

Under the guidance and leadership of Fr Mathew, we are looking to expand and enrich our community in youth projects, music in worship, children's liturgy and other areas. If you want to be active in our future please speak with Fr Mathew at the church, or use the contact page. If you have any comments about this site, its content or suggestions for additional content, please use the contact form and send a message to the webmaster.

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The Advent Wreath


Today, the second Sunday of Advent, we light the second purple candle on our Advent wreath. This candle typically represents love - some traditions call this the "Bethlehem Candle," symbolising Christ's manger:


"This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger."

Today's Gospel
In this week's Gospel Reading Matthew describes the work and preaching of John the Baptist. John the Baptist appears in the tradition of the great prophets of Israel, preaching repentance and reform to the people of Israel. In fact, the description of John found in this reading is reminiscent of the description of the prophet Elijah (2 Kings 1:8). In this reading, John directs a particularly pointed call to repentance to the Pharisees and Sadducees, parties within the Jewish community of the first century.
John marks the conversion of those who seek him out with a baptism of repentance. Other groups in this period are thought to have practised ritual washings for similar purposes, and John's baptism may have been related to the practices of the Essenes, a Jewish sect of the first century. John's baptism can be understood as an anticipation of Christian baptism. In this passage, John himself alludes to the difference between his baptism and the one yet to come: “I am baptising you with water, for repentance. He will baptise you with the Holy Spirit and fire.” (Matthew 3:11).
In this reading, John makes very clear that his relationship to the Messiah yet to come (Jesus) is one of service and subservience: “….the one who is coming after me is mightier than I. I am not worthy to carry his sandals” (Matthew 3:11). In the context of Matthew's Gospel, today's passage is followed by Jesus' baptism by John, an event that is attested to in all four of the Gospels and appears to have been the start of Jesus' public ministry.
John's preaching of the coming of the Lord is a key theme of the Advent season. As John's message prepared the way for Jesus in the first century, we, too, are called to prepare ourselves for Jesus' coming. We respond to John's message by our repentance and reform of our lives. We are also called to be prophets of Christ, who announce by our lives, as John did, the coming of the Lord.