Dear Sisters of Court St. Louis,
We’ve made it! It’s December and the Season of Advent.
The definition of Advent as stated on Mathew Kelly’s The Dynamic Catholic Institute website:
“The word “advent” (the arrival of an important person or thing) is derived from the Latin word “adventus,” which means “coming.” For Catholics, Advent is the four-week season leading up to Christmas. During Advent we anticipate the coming of Jesus. It’s a time full of reflection, excitement, and hope.”
“It’s a time full of reflection” – 2018 has been a very busy year. There’s been a lot of change in our personal lives and within our Court. A healthy retrospective examination of 2018 and what’s coming will help prepare the Court and ourselves for 2019.
“It’s a time full of excitement” – The upcoming birth of Jesus increases this excitement which fills us with joy. Christmas parties and family gatherings will ensue as we wait for the birth of Jesus. Soon the church will be decorated with purple, poinsettias and pine trees with tiny white lights to augment our gathering space and highlight the miracle of his birth.
“It’s a time full of hope” – Advent is the beginning of the new liturgical year for the church. It’s a fresh start for our church, for our court and for ourselves. As we look forward to the new year, may we find courage in the child born in Bethlehem and be confident that he is with us every day sharing his love and mercy.
I would like to add “it’s a time full of prayer” – Praying is the most important action we can perform in our spiritual lives. Praying offers us respite from the evil of this world. It re-energizes our souls, so we can keep our minds and hearts on the pathway of righteousness.
As I write this note, I’ve been thinking a lot about our Holy Mother Mary. How Mary must have been “full of reflection, excitement, hope and prayer” as she traveled nine months pregnant on a horseback to Bethlehem. I can only project my own feelings of anxiety when time after time she and Joseph were told there was “no room at the Inn”. Then, desperate for a place for Mary to give birth, Joseph selects the best option – a barn with a manger. Yet, our Mother Mary surrounded by her beloved husband and protected by the angels above was “full of grace” as she gave birth to Jesus.
There are so many life lessons to be learned from the nativity story. And each year during Advent, we are given the opportunity to reflect, hope and pray as we excitedly wait for the coming of the child called Jesus.
With unity and charity,