ADVENT: Be Watchful! Be Alert!
First Week of Advent
December 7 RCIA Session
Isaiah 63:16b-17, 19b; 64:2-7
Psalm 80:2-3, 4, 15-16, 18-19
1 Corinthians 1:3-9
"Why do you let us wander, O LORD, from your ways, and harden our hearts so that we fear you not? ...No ear has ever heard, no eye ever seen, any God but you doing such deeds for those who wait for him. Would that you might meet us doing right, that we were mindful of you in our ways! ...There is none who calls upon your name, who rouses himself to cling to you; for you have hidden your face from us and have delivered us up to our guilt." -cf. Isaiah 63:16b-64:7
"Jesus said to his disciples: 'Be watchful! Be alert! You do not know when the time will come.'" -cf. Mark 13:33-37
ANNOUNCEMENTS: Special plans for this Thursday, December 7
- This week all the youth will meet with their groups and parents will meet in their usual rooms as well. BUT, at 7:50 pm, all youth will meet their parents in the Cafeteria and go with their families to Adoration in the Church. This Adoration time will be "guided." Parents should help their children be still and prayerful, realizing that Jesus is present and desiring us as we pray together. This Adoration time is part of our special Parish Advent prayer, the Forty Hours Devotion.
- After the guided portion of Adoration, around 8:30 pm, families are free to go home OR to remain for as long as they wish. P
- If you wish to know more about Adoration with Children, click here for some answers to Frequently Asked Questions.
PRACTICE THE FAITH: WAITING IN DARKNESS...FOR THE LIGHT
- Take part in one or both of the two main Advent activities of St. Monica Parish - the Giving Tree and the 40 Hours Devotion.
- Plan your Advent! Use this resource to consider what traditions you will keep for yourself, and/or your family, in your own home.
- Put an Advent Wreath on your table, and take time every day at meal time to read a passage of Scripture, to listen to one another, to pause for a moment in silence to remember that God wants to come to us, each and all.
CONNECTIONS: Waiting for the Christ to COME
AWAKE * ALERT * STILL * LISTENING/WATCHING/WAITING * IN THE DARK, BELIEVING IN THE LIGHT
When I was in college, I was befriended by a Holy Cross Brother who made it his business, basically, to welcome others to Christ. There was a daily rosary at the Grotto, a replica of the one in Lourdes, France. After the rosary we students were often all invited to hot chocolate with Br. John and the other retired Brothers of Holy Cross (they seemed ancient!). The coffee cups were small and Br. John’s method of serving hot chocolate involved filling the small cups with cream and an entire packet of hot chocolate before adding boiling water. Second cups-full were more than permissible! There in that dining room of older men, time stood still for us young, busy and somewhat over-important students. In the shortest, darkest days of winter, we found light, warmth, and a simple, unabashed welcome. In the quiet of that dining room we glimpsed something greater to come. This is Advent. It is about seeing beyond the present, about stepping outside of time and our usual concerns, in hopes that we might know something eternal. To really KNOW the coming of Christ, past/present/future, we have to know our own longing for a Savior. We have to know darkness, cold, separation, and loss to understand the great gift that has been given us, and that is promised us. Advent is about waiting, about patiently enduring the dark. Fulfillment will come, in God’s time, in God’s way. For now we wait. We do nothing but wait. And as we wait, we do so together, welcoming those who also need a Savior, to wait with us. This world will end, and in that time, Christ will come again!