Advent IV: A Season of Love

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The Christian season of Advent—a season of hopeful expectation as we wait to welcome the Christ Child born anew at Christmas—began November 29, 2015, the First Sunday of Advent. Each week in Advent, Brother David Bryan Hoopes, the Prior of Holy Cross Priory in Toronto, has posted an Advent Reflection. Please scroll down the page for earlier reflections.

Our journey toward celebrating the birth of Christ is essentially an experience of God’s love for us and for the world. As the day’s lose more and more of their light, we are given this light of grace, a light of love to counter the darkness and anxieties of life. St. Augustine of Hippo wrote of God’s grace in these words: “Because you have loved me, O Lord you have made me lovable.” Augustine writes of a double blessing. God’s love makes us lovable in an active sense, empowering us to love. And, in a passive sense, we are made capable of being loved.

Love enables courtesy This is not a mere formal piece of etiquette but a graced reverence that bids us welcome the coming of God’s grace. The Christian tradition tells us that we are God’s temple, God’s house, the place where God wishes to dwell. Love wishes to make room for God, to welcome God with open joy. We must be vigilent in keeping space in our lives for God. Too often busyness, schedules, and preoccupations claim the time and space that rightly are God’s. Advent reminds us of the privilege of welcoming God.

Purify our conscience, Almighty God, by your daily visitation, that your Son Jesus Christ, at his coming, may find in us a mansion prepared for himself; who lives and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.

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