Fourth Week of Advent
For many of us, Christmas brings up so many emotions, memories and expectations. We have one nativity story, but it can seem like we all have very different Christmases.
Loving God, like Elizabeth,
who recognized Jesus in Mary,
we pray that we may recognize Jesus in others,
especially in those who are suffering and most in need.
This week try to recognize the presence of Jesus in people who are sick.
Think of someone you know who is sick – and reach out to him or her today.
– Sister Pat Montini
Third Week of Advent
God is incarnate in our world.
God’s Spirit lives and breathes in and through all that is.
We are lost only when we do not understand
that God is already with
and in each one of us.
Our task is the recognition of God’s initiative to be at home in us – acceptance of God-With-Us.
We move through this week feeling a part of the waiting world that rejoices because our longing has prepared us to believe that God’s joy is close.
– Sister Anna Marie Gaglia
Second Week of Advent
As I enter a darkened room, I light the candles representing the first and second weeks of Advent.
I thought. . . . I can’t believe that the first week of Advent is over.
I’ve been so busy. . . . too busy.
My soul felt sad.
I recalled that a week ago I had experienced being invited to spend a little extra time in quiet prayer during the Advent season.
I experienced such joy and consolation as I felt Christ calling me to experience a deeper intimacy with him and with all of creation.
As I recalled my week’s activities, I realized that I had taken very little time for prayer.
It was then that I asked God if I could have a “second chance?”
Then I was drawn to read the second reading of the second week in Advent. At that point in Paul’s journey, he spoke these words to the Philippians who had become discouraged:
I am confident of this, that the one who began this good work in you will continue to complete it.
What a joy there is in knowing that our God is a God who faithfully offers us “second chances.”
And it is our loving God who will accomplish through us what God desires for us.
My soul was at peace.
– Sister Anne Green
First Week of Advent
The world around us feels so fearful that it can be hard to return our hearts to the childlike innocence that would allow us to fully experience the miracle of God’s love.
That child still lives in us, however, and a change in focus can help us rediscover it.
The Gospel tells us to watch, to be alert. What do we watch for? What is it, exactly, are we expecting?
We can watch for wonder.
We can allow ourselves to be astonished by the small acts of love and care around us.
We can recommit ourselves to bring all into unity with God, with one another, and with all creation.
All creation is waiting for us to act!
Let us pray that the graces of this season will begin to Advent in us.
– Sister Sue Clay