By Sister Marietta Wethington
Do you like Advent? It is my favorite liturgical season. I like its symbols, rituals and rich vocabulary. Advent comes in December, the darkest month of the year. The word advent means coming. What is coming? Who is coming? The light of the world is coming. Jesus is coming. Why is Jesus coming? To dispel the darkness from our hearts, our world and to give hope.
The four weeks of Advent are a journey that leads to Christmas. The wonderful part about that is we do not have to journey alone. We journey together as the people of God. We sing hymns of praise and light candles on the Advent wreath. It is a joyful journey of anticipation. We are not disappointed. At the end of any journey we expect to find something great. Our advent journey is no different. At the end we find the one who will bring us salvation and eternal life.
Advent is a time of stillness liturgically. The Church calls us to quiet and reflection. That is quite a challenge for many of us. Our consumeristic society calls us to hustle and bustle. It is hard to listen to the voice of the Holy Spirit who speaks in our hearts while the sounds around us call us to buy more and more. Newspaper ads and television commercials try to convince us that they have just what we need. We know those material things will not satisfy the deep-down longings of our hearts. We know that only God alone satisfies.
May our souls not sleep through Advent this year. May they remain wide awake as we wait in joyful anticipation for the one who loves us all.
What is your experience of Advent?
How are you challenged?
How are you enriched?