Reflection for the First Week of Advent, the beginning of the Church Year

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Advent Candles - one lit.

Advent – Longing for God to be with us!

The Church year opens with Advent, a season of preparation for God’s coming, as a baby at Christmas, and in every moment of our lives. It’s a little like cleaning the house and making it ready for special guests!

It’s a time of making a home in our hearts for the poor and oppressed, the suffering, the refugees, the homeless in the midst of plenty. Perhaps all we can do is care—and if we are all one in the web of God’s creation that will be enough.

The Second Reading this Sunday is a prayer: … may our God make you increase and abound in love for one another and for all, just as we abound in love for you.  And may God so strengthen your hearts in holiness that you may be blameless before our God and Father at the coming of our Lord Jesus with all his saints… we ask and urge you in the Lord Jesus that, as you learned from us how you ought to live and to please God (as, in fact, you are doing), you should do so more and more.

Alfred Delp SJ wrote in 1935: Advent is the time of the God-seeker. The original longing within every human heart is a great impulse toward the hidden and distant God, a longing to wander in that far-off, forgotten homeland of the soul. And in a letter written from prison in 1944, he writes: More, and on a deeper level than ever before, we really know this time, that all of life is Advent.

In his letter for the Year of Consecrated Life, Pope Francis writes: A whole world awaits us: men and women who have lost all hope, families in difficulty, abandoned children, young people without a future, the elderly, sick and abandoned, those who are rich in the world’s goods but impoverished within, men and women looking for a purpose in life, thirsting for the divine… I ask you to work concretely in welcoming refugees, drawing near to the poor, and finding creative ways to catechize, to proclaim the Gospel and to teach others how to pray.

FCJ Word
We commit ourselves to the pilgrimage of discovery into God revealed in the cosmos and we actively integrate this new consciousness into every aspect of our living. (FCJ General Chapter 2013)

What helps me make more room in my heart for God?
more room for the ‘whole world [that] awaits us’?

One Response to “Reflection for the First Week of Advent, the beginning of the Church Year”

  1. Maryrose Dennehy Says:

    Dear Lynn,
    I have just re-read the article for the FIrst Week of Advent and found it very helpful. Thank youo

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