Dear Brothers and Sisters of the 4th Day,
Once again, our Christian journey finds us at the beginning of the Blessed and Holy Season of Advent. The weather is getting colder, the trees are bare, and the days are noticeably shorter, and there are obvious signs of change all around us. The new Liturgical Year is another sign of change.
Advent gives us the opportunity to use the stillness and quiet of these weeks before the Incarnation to reflect, pray, and to accept Jesus in our lives in new and amazing ways, while we anticipate and await His return.
But despite our best efforts, the time leading up to Christmas is often filled with business, distractions, and stress. We have our family traditions and gatherings, shopping, baking, wrapping, and yes all those “holiday” parties to attend. So much for the stillness and quiet of Advent, right?
Such is the world we live in today, and this is what our culture has embraced as the norm for celebrating Christmas. But these are not altogether sad reflections on society as much as they are occasions to show the face of Christ in an increasingly secular world. Here’s why.
As Christians, and especially Cursillistas, at Christmas we celebrate much more than the materialism and commercialism that has so taken hold of this most blessed result of God’s love for us. While we do, and should, take part in the festivities of the season–we celebrate Emmanuel—“God is with us” (Mt 1:23). We celebrate the coming of The Savior who has come to us, is with us still and will come to us again. We celebrate the One who gives us answers to the trials and evils of our troubled world. This is truly cause for celebration!
We are not removed from the negativity of our world, we live as a Christian witness in it, embrace it with all its faults, and bring Jesus, and His unfailing message to it. And by the Grace of God, perhaps we change it one person at a time.
We pray that this Holy Advent season be a time of reconciliation and change—change of heart for ourselves as well as our neighbor. May this be a season that brings hope to the hopeless and healing to the wounded souls of our time. And above all, may it be a season of the love and joy that the Prince of Peace makes ever possible, again and again. O Come, O Come Emmanuel.