Advent’s Here!

Advent’s here. Jesus is coming! He came over two thousand years ago in Bethlehem, of course, yet he will come again, at the end of time.

“He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead, and his kingdom will be without end.” We pray for his coming in the Our Father: “Your kingdom come.”

We wait with a “blessed” hope, which means embracing a bigger, long-term vision to sustain and strengthen us as we go forward in life. It’s a hope that keeps dreams alive for something better for our world and ourselves. A blessed hope saves us from small-mindedness, from being dragged down by failure or swallowed up by a deadening present. It’s a hope based on God’s promise, not on our resources.

Don’t rush into Christmas yet. First, put up an Advent wreath in your home to match the Advent wreath you see in church. Then, take the next four weeks savoring the readings and prayers of Advent. I’ll put as many of them as I can on this blog in the coming weeks.

As Advent begins, you’re likely to hear that ancient song “O Come O Come Emmanuel.” The text is based on the names of Christ used in daily Vespers the week leading up to Christmas, known as the ‘O’ antiphons

O Wisdom

O Lord

O Root of Jesse

O Key of David

O Dayspring

O King of the Nations

O ‘God-is-with-us’

You can learn more about these special antiphons at Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/O_antiphon

Here’s a beautiful explanation of Bach’s Advent music on Vatican Radio
And, in case you are looking for a handy little guide for the season, here’s one produced by the Passionists.

3 Comments

Filed under Religion

3 responses to “Advent’s Here!

  1. Gail Smyder

    Father, I love your prayers and customs site. We used it for St. Nicholas for a few years, but I see there is much more. How wonderful to share with our Rel. Ed. program for both teachers and students. I plan to do more with your Saving Santa Claus in our parish.

    A Blessed Thanksgiving

  2. Advent causes me to pause and evaluate where our religion is at this point in time. With the many challenges to Christianity and the Roman Catholic Tradition, we need to bolster our foundation to make sure that young people continue to participate in our Catholic Traditions. This raises the following question, “Are Altar-persons an endangered species”? I’ve noticed that many Sundays, our priests stand-alone on the altar with no altar boys or altar girls to assist during mass. Shouldn’t our young parents join together in encouraging their children, both girls as well as boys, to reunite the flame that contributes to the foundation of our Roman Catholic Tradition? Please bring back the Altar-person at each and every mass.
    Thank You.

  3. vhoagland

    Good suggestion, Charles.
    Fr.Victor

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