On the Gospel of Matthew 1:18-24
Fourth Sunday of Advent
As we prepare for the very special season of Christmas, the Church presents us, on this fourth Sunday of Advent, with the story of the coming of Jesus Christ in the Gospel of St. Matthew. In most accounts of the birth of Christ, the person of Mary is normally central. This passage is quite unique, however, in that it gives an account of the way in which the coming of Christ affected Joseph, faster-father of Jesus. Joseph is a wonderful role-model for men in the way in which he puts Mary and Jesus first in everything he does. With the very real prospect of societal ridicule, Joseph has the courage to follow the instructions of the angel of the Lord and take Mary as his wife to his home, believing that Jesus was conceived through the power of the Holy Spirit.