Fourth Sunday of Advent- Love and Forgiveness- Let’s Celebrate!
Christmas is only a few short days away and we will soon be trading in our purple and pink Advent wreath for the white Christmas candle. As we celebrate this last week of Advent, we celebrate the arrival of Christ—he’s finally here! Sometimes, the last candle of the advent wreath is referred to as the candle of love—the love of God in the form of His son Jesus, the love that Jesus spread throughout the world, and the love that we all share for each other. As we end this Advent season, let us remember what the Christmas holiday is truly about, Christ and His love for mankind.
What does Jesus want for us this Christmas? It is the same thing he wanted for the early Christians shortly after his time on earth. It is to be completely filled with the Holy Spirit. It would have been easy for the early Christians to be discouraged. They were faced with a seemingly impossible task of spreading Jesus’ story throughout the world. They lacked resources and man power and yet, we know the result of their efforts. How did they do it? The message was of love, forgiveness and community that unshackles us from the restraints of sin. It is glorious and it is contagious.
God wants the same thing for us this Christmas. You do not need to be reminded that Christmas time, while festive, can put many people on edge. Gift buying, school Christmas productions, office parties, family parties, travel, decorations, running a business, mailing packages, charity, etc. The season can really take a toll on our patience and mental capacity. So we pause, this last week of Advent and pray for the gifts that will keep us on an enlightened path. Love God, and your neighbor as yourself. Pray for the people who are struggling and causing issues (pray for yourself if that person is you). Forgive yourself and others for the mistakes made in the past. Give all of your anxiety and pain to God. He wants all of it! He died so we could give it to him. So spend a lot of time with him this Christmas. That is the most unbelievably beautiful reason to celebrate!
Anne Atkin, principal
“All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing then in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, to the close of the age.” (Matthew 28:18-20).