12-02-2018 "Hear My Voice and Open the Door"

Our Lady of the Holy Rosary-St. Richard Catholic Church
Journey of Faith
DECEMBER 2, 2018 - FIRST SUNDAY OF ADVENT
PLEASE PRAY FOR THE SAFE RELEASE OF LEAH SHARIBU AND OTHERS WHO ARE HELD CAPTIVE BECAUSE THEY REFUSE TO RENOUNCE THEIR CHRISTIAN FAITH
Opening Prayer
Scripture Readings
"The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; those who lived in a land of deep darkness— on them light has shined” (Isaiah 9:2)  
"HEAR MY VOICE AND OPEN THE DOOR"
How are you preparing for Advent and Christmas?

During this Advent season, we are called to prepare our hearts and minds to reflect on and celebrate the anniversary of the birth of our Lord on Christmas, and our longing and hope for the Second Coming of Christ at the end of time. Unfortunately, the frantic hustle and bustle to purchase and do things in hope of having “Happy Holidays” often distracts us from this preparation, and from the true meaning and purpose of the Advent and Christmas Seasons.

Christ wishes to continuously dwell in our hearts and minds, and to permeate our entire being. “Listen! I am standing at the door, knocking; if you hear my voice and open the door, I will come in to you and eat with you, and you with me” (Rev. 3:20) Therefore, we are called to open our minds and hearts to allow God, through the indwelling Spirit, to become the focal point and guiding Light of our lives.

The Light of Christ is always present and, although we don’t always see it, this Light will never be extinguished. As John’s Gospel says, “the light shines on inside of the darkness, and the darkness will not over-come it” (1:5).

We are called and invited to acknowledge, accept, and share that Jesus Christ is the “light of the world” and “Whoever follows [Christ] will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life” (Jn 8:12).

To begin to do this, we are called to clear out the clutter of our egoistic thoughts, desires, habits, and actions that prevent us from loving, seeing, and experiencing the presence of the Light of Christ within us and within one another, such as: our pride or need for self-importance; our attachment to our possessions; when we have allowed “things” to become more important than people; our desire for control of persons or events; our harboring of grudges or our refusal to forgive others who have caused us offense; our inability to let go of our own previously acknowledged and forgiven sins; or in our ignoring or failing to respond in love to the needs of others, especially the poor and marginalized among us.

Spend time during this Advent and Christmas seasons to examine and reflect on your thoughts, desires, habits and actions of your life. Are they centered on God, or on something else? Do they move you towards the Light of Christ’s love and salvation for yourself and others, or do they try to keep you hidden in the darkness, fearful of being exposed by the Light of Christ.

Let go of the darknesses of your life and open up the door to your mind and heart to let the Light of Christ shine in and through you by the power of the indwelling Spirit. 
Reflect on Your Experience

What can you begin to do now to clear out the clutter of your life that prevents you from loving, seeing, and experiencing the Light of Christ in your life and the lives of others?
U.S. Catholic Catechism for Adults   Catecismo Catolico de Los Estadios Unidos para los Adultos  
Compendium on the Social Doctrine of the Church    Compendio de la Doctrina Social de la Iglesia
Videos
"The Light of Christ"

"The Immaculate Conception"

"The Church at the Border"

"Mary the Immaculate Conception"
Music
"Ave Maria" (Maria Callas)

"Shine, Jesus, Shine"

"Immaculate Mary" 


"Christ Be Our Light"
Other Resources
"Jesus the Light of the World"

"Why is Jesus referred to as the 'Light of the World' and how does that relate to Christmas?"

"Behold, I Stand at the Door and Knock"

"Why Catholics Believe in the Immaculate Conception"

Advent and Christmas Resources 2018-2019

Other Prayer Resources

Social Services and Other Charitable Resources

Other Resources on Catholic Social Teaching
Reflection
If you have any questions or concerns, please email us at: aff@hrsrcs.org

 

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