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The Reason for the Season


“Prepare the way of the Lord,

Make straight his paths.”

Isaiah 40:3


This past weekend marked the beginning of Advent and the start of a new liturgical year. In Mark’s Gospel yesterday, Jesus said to his disciples: “Be watchful! Be alert! You do not know when the time will come.” During the Season of Advent, we prepare for the coming of the infant Jesus at Christmas by decorating our homes, sending cards to friends and family, shopping for Christmas gifts, listening to holiday music (see YouTube video below), and baking delicious treats. We also prepare for the day when Christ will come again, and during this time, we reflect on our spiritual health and potentially make some positive changes in our routines.


Throughout the course of our lives, we know that we reap what we sow. If we want to feel healthy and energetic, we know we need to provide our bodies with proper nutrients and exercise. Financial stability will only be achieved if we moderate our spending and follow a budget. Our cars will cease to operate if we do not make time to take them in for servicing. It is vital that we teach our children that they are responsible for their own outcomes as well. If they do not make their bed or pick up their toys or clothes, their room will be messy (unless Mom does it for them, which defeats the purpose). If they do not practice their instrument or their free throws, they will not get better as a musician or athlete; and if they do not put forth the highest effort in their schoolwork every day, they will not develop to their fullest potential. These traits take time to nurture so they become well-engrained, and the earlier our children start incorporating these habits, the better prepared they will be.


So, too, must we all take charge of our destiny as Christians. We may all desire to be part of God’s heavenly kingdom one day, but we need to do some work in preparation so we are ready. Last Friday, our students met with their “Crusader Buddy” to engage in an Advent activity. Each partner class selected a different activity: some filled out Advent calendars or set goals for the Season, others made Advent wreaths, and others enlisted their artistic skills by coloring or drawing Christmas images. Our older students are such great role models and mentors for the littles, and the younger students are so excited when the bigger kids join them. Many teachers shared that the students wish they could spend more time together. The goal of these Advent activities was to help all our students understand the importance of this special Season, and to utilize the next few weeks in thoughtful and intentional preparation.


Hopefully, you, too, will be able to pause and reflect on the Reason for the Season, and in between the decorating, shopping, and baking, find time with your children to attend Mass each week, engage in daily prayer, and participate in an act of service. We are not only preparing for Christ’s coming at Christmas, but we are also getting ourselves ready for what the future may hold.


In Mission,

Kathy



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