Advent: Season of Preparation

Dear Families,

Our liturgical calendar reflects the rhythm of our universal human experience. In these closing weeks of Ordinary time, the lectionary (daily Mass and Sunday readings) direct our attention to what is commonly conceived to be the “end times”. These apocalyptic messages are not intended to secretly reveal the state of things before God returns; instead, they reveal (apokaluptein, Greek, “uncover”, “reveal”) the profound mystery that happens next in our calendar: the Incarnation.

My small mind likes to reduce important lessons to a simple phrase: we are only ready for the end if we fully embrace the beginning.

Advent is a season of preparation for the Incarnation (notice I haven’t uttered Christmas). My own personal quest is to avoid Mariah Carey holiday music, so I found myself listening to another artist on the way to school this morning.

I couldn’t help but get the goosebumps as I listened to the following lyrics:

Here the sound of bells ring
In the cold night air we sing
Songs of joy, peace, and love

Say goodnight and journey home
Through the leafless woods alone
Silence in the snow is like a dream

Diamonds on the hills reflect the thrill
Of all the glory that has fallen to the earth

All of life's surrendering
To the death that winter brings
In hope of new life

On this holy night
Holy night
We remember Christ

Come in from the cold
Come and rest your soul
Join us by the fire

Tonight the stories told
Ancient but never old
Of when the Saviour came
All the angels sang
Peace on earth good will to men
A child has been born

And all of us are suffering
Beneath the weight of death and sin
In hope of new life
All our hopes made good in Christ

On this Holy Night
Holy Night
We worship Christ

Gloria, Gloria
Gloria, Gloria
Angels we have heard on high
In Excelsis Deo

Another maxim that I find helpful: God became man to bring man back to God. May this season of Advent remind us all that God took upon our nature, refused to give up on us, and that we should never give up on Him, even when the signs of the times are not the happiest.

Yours Truly in Christ,

Derek Tremblay