Soul Food for Young Adults: 4th Sunday of Advent, Dec. 23, 2012. ‘Dear Sinead and Mark’

Sunrise from Dominic's Hill, December 21, 2012, the Winter Solstice, from Dominic's Hill, Esker Monastery & Retreat Centre, Athenry, Co. Galway.

FOURTH SUNDAY OF ADVENT,  Dec. 23, 2012.  (Gospel: Luke 1:39-44)

Letter to Sinead and Mark,- two young adults.

Dear Sinead and Mark,

As a child and young boy, I would sit out on the wall of the front garden of our house on the Navan Road in Dublin, waiting and waiting,- waiting for the arrival of Uncle Tadhg and Auntie Nell, and for our cousins. I would sit for ages, looking at every car that approached from the distance. I was excited and full of expectation.

The other morning, I stood on Dominic’s Hill,

Awaiting the dawn, Dec. 18th, 2012, on Dominic's Hill, near the Redemptorist Retreat Centre, Esker, Atnenry, Co. Galway

near our monastery here in Esker, to watch for the sunrise, around the shortest day of the year. The sky was lit up beautifully with colour for a good while before the moment of sunrise. I waited, watching, knowing that the moment would eventually arrive, but the waiting was wonderful,- wonder-full! There was this quiet excitement of expectation of something special. The waiting itself was really memorable for me, as the moment grew closer and closer.

And that’s how I feel, this weekend. We’re almost there. (‘Are we there yet?’)  We are waiting for the One who is called ‘the Rising Sun’ (Luke, Chapter 1). The moment is almost upon us, when He who is to come will arrive again for us, as if for the first time. As we wait, even as adults we are as excited as children waiting for their presents.

In our generation, as in every generation before us, He is looking for a place in which to lay his head,- he is looking for hearts that are wide open in welcome to him.

Put a candle in the window of your heart and home, to invite him to come and stay. “Let us pray as Advent closes that Christ will truly come into our hearts.”

‘Are we there yet?’ Almost.

Fr. Seamus

P.S. here are some of the wonderful lines from the readings for this 4th Sunday of Advent: pick any one of them to ponder on, for these couple of days:

‘As soon as Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the child leapt in

'The child in my womb leapt for joy!'

her womb and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit.’

Of all women you are the most blessed!

And blessed is the fruit of your womb (Jesus).

Why should I be honoured with a visit from the mother of my Lord?

For the moment your greeting reached my ears, the child in my womb leapt for joy.’

Yes, blessed is she who believed that the promise made her by the Lord would be fulfilled.’


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