An excellent way to focus our thoughts and deepen our understanding of the meaning of Advent is to turn to the Bible. Sometimes, however, it’s hard to know where to start. That is why the Catholic Church has provided us with the Office of the Readings, part of the Liturgy of the Hours, the official prayer of the Church. In the Office of the Readings, the Church has chosen Scripture passages that are appropriate to every day of the year.
Every season of the Church year has a certain theme or themes. During Advent, the Church turns to the Old Testament book of the Prophet Isaiah. There are many themes in Isaiah's prophecy, but some of the most important are:
- The need for repentance
- Spiritual conversion
- The extension of salvation from Israel to all nations
From December 17 through December 24, the Church offers special readings to ensure that key parts of the Book of Isaiah are read before Christmas. All days in the fourth week of Advent fall after December 17. You can find the readings and commentary for December 17-24 at Advent Scripture Readings for December 17-24.