PORTLAND – During Advent, Bishop Robert Deeley will host a special virtual prayer and blessing gathering for all Maine families at 5 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 12.

Last year, hundreds of individuals and families in Maine logged in and joined the bishop for the special online event, which lasts about 10 minutes.

All are welcome, and there are four ways to connect to the gathering:

The event falls on the third Sunday of Advent, known as Gaudete Sunday. In Latin, “gaudete” means “rejoice,” and that is exactly what Catholics traditionally do to commemorate the day. It has been marked as “Gaudete Sunday” since the time of Pope St. Gregory the Great in the sixth century.

A special Advent section on the Diocese of Portland’s website features many useful resources including a variety of prayers, blessings, and reflections; downloadable and interactive calendars; and event listings for the diocese. The section can be found at www.portlanddiocese.org/advent.