Each year when we begin the season of Advent we are reminded of the God's infinite love to save each one of us personally. This therefore is a great season of joy, hope and anticipation. There is the joy of God's continued intervention in our life to make us better and renewed. There is the hope of starting afresh as a Catholic in our commitment to faith personally and as a community.

Next year our pastoral theme will be Synodality and Co-Responsibility of all the baptised (IBandla elihambisana ndawonye lokuphatheka kwababhabhathiziweyo). As God renews His commitment to us, let us also rededicate ourselves to our faith and exercise our individual responsibility in the Church. Each and every baptised person has a role to play in the Church. Therefore we need to bring before the Lord and the whole Church all our talents and time to make the Church better and stronger in faith. We can only make our Church better with the cooperation of each and every baptised Catholic. On each Sunday of Advent as we follow a particular theme let us enter into those mysteries knowingly and willingly. Let us try to understand and know the liturgical meaning of each Sunday of Advent. Let us learn the meaning of every symbol, gesture and posture that we use during the Holy Mass. Let every prayer that is prayed sink into our hearts to renew us from within. May I call upon each of you to renew your commitment to the Church during this Advent. Then the Lord who has created us in His own image and likeness and who has bestowed upon us various gifts and talents will bless us and increase our faith.

During this season of Advent may I invite each of you;

1. To show love to those around us especially the needy and suffering.

2. To remember and thank God for his love for us, and how he prepared a plan and a wonderful life for us.

3. To praise God, because praise prepares us to come closer to Him.

4. To participate fully in all the activities of the Church.

I wish each of you many blessings of this season of Advent.

"The world tells us to seek success, power and money; God tells us to seek humility, service and love."
- Pope Francis -

+ Alex Thomas
Archbishop of Bulawayo

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