First Sunday of Advent: be vigilant!

“Beware that your hearts do not become drowsy…
Be vigilant at all times and pray” (Lk 21:34, 36)

We need to be vigilant so that our daily life does not become routine, and, as Jesus says, so we are not burdened by life’s anxieties (cf. v. 34).

So today is a good moment to ask ourselves: what weighs on my heart? What weighs on my spirit? What makes me go to sit in the lazy chair? […] What are the mediocrities that paralyze me, the vices that crush me to the ground and prevent me from raising my head? And regarding the burdens that weigh on the shoulders of our brothers and sisters, am I aware of them or indifferent to them?

These are good questions to ask ourselves, because they help guard our hearts against apathy. Apathy is a great enemy of the spiritual life and also of Christian life. Apathy is a type of laziness that makes us slide into sadness, it takes away zest for life and the will to do things. It is a negative spirit that traps the soul in apathy, robbing it of its joy.

the secret to being vigilant is prayer. In fact, Jesus says: “Be vigilant at all times and pray” (Lk 21:36). Prayer is what keeps the lamp of the heart lit. This is especially true when we feel that our enthusiasm has cooled down. Prayer re-lights it, because it brings us back to God, to the center of things. Prayer reawakens the soul from sleep and focuses it on what matters, on the purpose of existence. Even during our busiest days, we must not neglect prayer.

Pope Francis
Angelus, Sunday 28 November 2021
First Sunday of Advent

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In memory of H.E. Msgr. Fabio Duque Jaramillo