St. Francis Xavier as a Guide During Advent
December 3, 2009
Francis Xavier was born into a family of the Spanish Nobility in the city of Pamplona on April 7, 1506.
While studying in Paris, Francis met Ignatius Loyola, a fellow Spaniard. The young nobleman entered the Society of Jesus and was ordained a Priest in 1537.
This zealous missionary began his work in India. From there, Francis traveled to what is now Sri Lanka, then to New Guinea, onto the Philippines and from there to Japan. In 1552, Francis set out for China but died at the age of 46 before he could reach his goal.
Francis Xavier’s feast is celebrated by the Church each year during the Liturgical Season of Advent: a period of preparation for the coming of Christ. And in a particular way, it can be said that this dedicated and indefatigable missionary priest from Spain was responsible for a “continual Advent” among those persons to whom he preached because, in doing so, Francis announced the “coming of Christ” again and again and again.
May we see his feast as an opportunity to renew our gratitude and appreciation for the sacrifices of all missionaries? May we accept the challenge given to the Church by our late Holy Father, John Paul II, to participate in the “New Evangelization” for the 21st century?
May we understand and appreciate that our reception of the Sacrament of Baptism places upon us the responsibility to be “Missionaries” to our contemporaries both by word and example.
May our daily witness to the Truth be a light to those who are in moral and intellectual darkness?
We ask this through the intercession of Our Lady and Saint Francis Xavier.