Saturday, 28 November 2015

The Season of Advent

The season of waiting in anticipation for the coming of Jesus Christ is now upon us. This special season marks the beginning of a new church year for the Catholic Community. We are now in the Year C cycle and our Gospel readings will be taken from Luke. 
There are many ways you can make this season a special one for you and your family. First of all, you can attend Holy Mass as a family. This is our obligation as Catholics - to attend weekend masses. By doing this, we allow the graces of Christ to enter into our souls and make us aware how much in need we are of him in our lives. Another way is by availing yourself to the Sacrament of Reconciliation. The season of Advent falls at a time where we see decorations going up around us - at the shopping malls and the houses to name a few, people are cleaning and painting their homes and many preparations are done at this time for the Christmas season which happens soon after. What we must realize is that, while it is good to have our physical homes clean, it is also as equally important to have our spiritual homes clean as well and this "home" which I speak of is our heart and soul. Sin blocks our connection with God and only the Sacrament can lift that sin away and make us sin-free in the eyes of God. Since, this season is a time of waiting, the Sacrament is very effective at this time to bring us back in gear with our relationship with God. 
The third way is to build your very own advent wreath at home and follow along with your own advent prayers as you light the relevant candles each week. 

The advent wreath is a special symbol which we use. The leaves represent the only leaf that remains blooming during the winter season, while the other trees wither away. This leaf is replicated in the form of advent wreaths. Also, the reason why the wreath is circular in shape is so that it represents our faith. A circle has no beginning and no end, so does our faith, which has no beginning and no end. 
The final way to make your Advent season special is by saying the Christmas Novena which begins 9 days prior to the start of the Christmas season (December 16th - December 24th). Our parish will be following the Christmas Novena every morning for the nine (9) said consecutive days at 5.30AM each morning, just before Morning Mass. Finally, make someone else's season a special one by spreading the love to someone who is less fortunate. This can be done via food hampers, monetary contributions or any other donation that you can make. 
Once you have followed along these steps, you can now enter into the Joy of the Christmas Season.

Happy Advent,
Brent Durham

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