Dear brothers and sisters in Christ,
The great season of hope is now upon us. Though barely four weeks long, Advent is a time for meditating on Our Lord’s first coming as we prepare for His Second Coming. So many things delight us about this holy time: lights shining brightly in the midst of darkness, carols, and beautiful music to lift one’s spirits, people being more caring than usual and generous to those less fortunate, and gatherings of family and friends.
Unfortunately, too often Advent becomes a time of stress and frenzy instead of peaceful recollection and wonder concerning God’s marvelous promises to humankind. Perhaps this year we can take the time to breathe in the silence of this season; to ask the Lord what He wants us to do. First and foremost may be making a good confession, especially if we have been away from this Sacrament of God’s healing grace for a long time. Imagine preparing your heart and soul as Mother Mary prepared the crib, the manger to receive her son and the Son of God.
How beautiful a tradition it is to put out that crib now – still empty – waiting until Christmas Day. Use its emptiness as a profound meditation in your homes as you prepare to welcome Christ anew into your lives. How wonderful it would be for Our Lord to find the crib of your heart warm, inviting, humble and simple, free of all sin and distraction. Can you imagine how delighted Our Lord would be to find your soul in such a radiant state!
Please be aware of the many opportunities available for the Sacrament of Confession during Advent. Know how the Lord is waiting to extend His Infinite Mercy to you as you await His re-birth in your hearts.