The Entrance Antiphon: " Rejoice in the Lord always; again I say rejoice. Indeed the Lord is near."
There is a not of joy because the Lord is near; we light a pink candle, the priest wears a pink vestment, and many of the congregation also wear pink.
The Collect is worth reflecting on: "O God, who see how your people faithfully await the feast of the Lord's Nativity, enable us, we pray, to attain the joys of so great a salvation and to celebrate them always with solemn worship and glad rejoicing."
The First Reading is from Isaiah 61: 1-2, 10-11. "The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because the Lord has anointed me; he has sent me to bring glad tidings to the poor, to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives and release to the prisoners....I rejoice heartily in the Lord, in my God is the joy of my soul; for he has clothed me with a robe of salvation...."
Responsorial Psalm: "My soul rejoices in my God..." It is the Magnificat taken from Luke's Gospel.
The Second Reading is from the first Letter of Paul to the Thessalonians: 5:16-24
It begins by Paul telling us to "Rejoice always. Pray without ceasing. In all circumstances give thanks, for this is the will of God for you in Christ Jesus. Do not quench the Spirit....
The Gospel is from John 1:6-8, 19-28 and begins by telling us, "A man named John was sent from God. He came for testimony, to testify to the light, so that all might believe through him...
Let us all rejoice today for Jesus is with us even as we prepare to celebrate His birth again this Christmas.