|Bridget Mary Meehan ARCWP|
On November 27th, Christians will begin the season of Advent. It is a time of preparing for the coming of the Christ Presence in our world, which encompasses the birth of Jesus in history, the living of Christ's Presence now, and the second coming of Christ at the end of time. Our liturgical leaders in my faith community decided that "bringing forth the Christ Presence" would be our Advent theme.
In the midst of deep division, polarization, anger and hatred in our country and world, it is a soul-stirring and spiritual -energizing challenge.
Here are 4 affirmations to illuminate our path toward healing and transformation:
First, affirm every person as the face of God with a spark of the divine in their souls, and refuse to demonize those who oppose us.
Second, affirm all people as God's family and offer respect and solidarity to all who work for justice, peace and equality in our world.
Third, pray daily for our elected leaders, and be conscious that prayer moves mountains because God is with the people, no matter what happens.
Fourth, give thanks that our oneness in God is deeper than anything that divides us, and let go of anxiety because we strive to live the golden rule in our blessed and diverse world.
"Christianity teaches that everyone broken, sick and lonely-everyone beneath our notice or beneath our contempt- is somehow Christ among us. 'He is disguised under every type of humanity that treads the earth,' said Dorothy Day. I suspect this also applies to Trump supporters -or-never-Trumpers, depending on your political proclivity. "Those people" are also "our people." We show civility and respect, not because the men and women who share our path always deserve it or return it, but because they bear a divine image that can never be completely erased. No change of president or shift in the composition of the Supreme Court can result in the repeal of the Golden Rule." (Michael Gerson, "For Evangelical Christians, a tunnel at the end of the light," Washington Post, Nov. 22, 2016)
The Tradition of Advent
Advent is the period of four Sundays and weeks before Christmas (or sometimes from the 1st December to Christmas Day!). Advent means 'Coming' in Latin. This is the coming of Jesus into the world. Christians use the four Sundays and weeks of Advent to prepare and remember the real meaning of Christmas.