Lifelong Catechesis

Forming Catholic identity across generations
May 24, 2024


The twofold character of Advent calls us to prepare for the remembering of the Word made Flesh at Christmas, and directs us to wait with alertness for Jesus’ second coming.

Sunday Readings and Backgrounds

Fourth Sunday of Advent

Reading I : Isaiah 7:10-14

She shall name him Immanuel.

  • Isaiah’s message to Ahaz is to watch for signs of God’s work.
  • The sign Isaiah describes, that a virgin shall be with child is used in the Gospel of Matthew to show Mary’s virginal conception of Jesus as a fulfillment of this text.
  • The name of the child, Emmanuel means “God with us.”

Reading II : Romans 1:1-7

In him we have been given the gift of being apostles.

  • In the introduction to the Letter to the Romans, Paul reflects on the identity of Jesus.
  • Jesus is a son of David “according to the flesh”—thus he is the Christ, the Messiah.
  • Jesus is also the Son of God. Through his Resurrection, he has acquired the title Lord.

Gospel : Matthew 1:18-24

God is with us.

  • Matthew gives a genealogy for Jesus that assures us that Jesus is a son of David, because his legal father, Joseph, is of the house of David.
  • In today’s Gospel, Joseph is also instructed to trust.
  • The name Jesus is related to the Hebrew word “savior.”