Be Holy, Be Happy!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

First Sunday of Advent

As we enter into the season of Advent, we are invited to pause and listen. What do you hear? Do you hear Christ knocking at the door of your heart? Is there room for Him in your inn?

In the spirit of the world, we often spend the time before Christmas filling our hands with useless stuff to keep us busy, noticed, and appreciated. The Church, however, gives us the season of Advent to let go of these distractions, sin, and fears so our hands can be free to hold the Baby who holds the entire world in His Heart.

At the beginning of the liturgical year, the Church calls us to develop an attentive attitude in order to receive Christ who wants to enter into our lives and speak to us. Everything that happens to us throughout the day is a divine moment in which we can encounter the Lord. Last Advent, Our Holy Father reminded us that the Lord speaks to us continuously through Scripture, the liturgy, the witness of the saints, in daily events, and in creation. Pope Benedict XVI recommended cultivating an “interior diary” of all the moments we have been aware of God’s love.

Reflecting on the gifts received should move our hearts to respond with gratitude and in anticipation to receive more. The reality that we are never alone, that Someone who loves us is always present to us, should fill us with joyful hope. As we grow in awareness of God’s presence in our lives, we become more disposed to the needs of our brothers and sisters. This is the secret of the saints’ self-giving love and what we are called to imitate.

“For creation awaits with eager expectation the revelation of the children of God; for creation was made subject to futility, not of its own accord but because of the one who subjected it, in hope that creation itself would be set free from slavery to corruption and share in the glorious freedom of the children of God.” (Romans 8:19-21)

Spend some time this week in prayer developing a plan for Advent. Where are you being invited to draw closer to Christ who comes to draw close to you? How can you witness the glorious freedom of the children of God to a world enslaved by materialism? The world needs saints this Advent to lead the way!

(Reflection by Joan Patten, A.O.)

Advent Resources

25 Ways to Celebrate Advent

Advent Letter of Bishop Giaquinta, 1975:

Bishops’ Website with Advent Resources

The Mary Page, Advent

Catholic Culture, Advent Resources


1 comment:

mary fulton said...

thanks for the great suggestions...especially the part about slowing down and how we get busy with things. That is me! Just a gentle reminder... :)