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Saturday, November 3, 2012

Peace in the Preparations: Advent 2012 and Link-Up

(Bloggers: Welcome! You'll find the link-up by clicking on the Christmas wreath which is located both on the sidebar and also later in this post.)

My husband and I found ourselves in a popular discount store on All Saints Day, the day after Halloween. At one point, as we went about our shopping, my husband startled me by suddenly halting for a moment. As I looked at him quizzically  he pointed upward. At that moment I realized what he had heard just a second before me: Christmas music.

Our popular culture recognizes a secularized version of a handful of Christian feast days: Christmas, Easter, St. Patrick's Day, Valentine's Day, and All Saints Eve. Popular culture is fond of the feasts, but doesn't give even the slightest nod to the fasts or preparatory seasons that surround these holidays. Instead, we are plunged from one secularized feast, directly into the next.

It's something like the experience of children growing up in some modern homes, who experience our relative wealth in Western culture without limitation. Many children don't do much waiting or wanting these days. Even in lean economic times, Western families are able to provide toys and entertainment to overflowing. Books are delivered electronically via the internet and may be read instantly. Today's teenagers don't experience the anticipation of the next episode of their favorite television show. Instead, they wait until the whole season is available on view-on-demand services and watch it over the course of a week.  No waiting is required; "cliffhangers" are a thing of the past. No one waits by the mailbox anymore.

Our modern culture's experience of holidays is similar. There is no room for longing. No time to search one's soul. No wanting, no waiting. We just..."have". The problem with instant "plenty" is that there is no buildup. It's difficult to want what comes easily. It's easy to always want more, when one regularly receives anything one wants, instantaneously.

These modern conveniences are new, but the Church is ancient. She's been around a while. She knows what works. In her wisdom, she offers to our new generation a very old practice: the keeping of Advent.

Love Came Down - No Greater Love - Teapot
Advent is about waiting. It is about searching for the birth of a Savior. It is about making preparations. We are all familiar with the nesting instincts of pregnant women. As they wait for their babies to arrive, they make careful preparations to greet the new little one in order to  make the baby comfortable. Advent is about "nesting". The baby for whom we wait, though, is the Son of God. The baby for whom we prepare our hearts, is the Savior of the world.

Join me this season, won't you? Join me in making room for a King.

Here at Liturgical Time, we will be sharing ideas for Advent preparation and observance. If you are a blogger, you will find an Advent 2012 button on our sidebar that you are welcome to feature on your blog. Go ahead, grab it, we won't mind. A click of this button will enable readers to join our community in sharing our Advent preparations.

Advent 2012 begins on December 2. In the meantime, we will be celebrating the holiday of Christ the King (more about that later) and making preparations for Advent.  We hope you'll come along.

Pax Christi Dear Ones!

Stop by and bookmark the Advent 2012 Collection for future visits:

 Advent 2012 Button
Stop by our Advent 2012 Link-up by clicking on the wreath above.


  1. Great post! I know exactly what you mean. Our advent starts Nov. 15th with a vegan fast until Christmas Day. It can be hard when everybody else is celebrating up until Christmas to savor that inner contemplating that prepares us for the holy feast.

  2. "Advent is about waiting. It is about searching for the birth of a Savior." I love this. I so want to make this time waiting to be a holy, reverent time so that my family and I can cherish the celebration of our Savior's birth!

  3. Michelle--SO lovely. I'm going to read this later and continue praying about how to observe the Advent season this year. Want to be more intentional about this time of year.

  4. Michelle, I love this and I'm linking to it. :) I think I understand how to link my Advent posts to it, so I'll give that a try shortly. :)

    1. Tiffany,
      I'm so glad you'll be joining us and sharing your Advent posts! You'll find the link-up by clicking on the wreath above, or on the sidebar.
      Blessings! I'm looking forward to reading your posts!

  5. I'm usually better about observing Lent than Advent properly, but I'd like to do a better job (with my family) this Advent. Thanks for your help!

  6. I’m coming along! Count me in.

  7. This is beautiful! So many times the Lord does just want us to wait on him and to hope. Psalm 33 has been ministering that to me this week. I hope to instill the idea of the expectation for the New King in my girls as they grow.


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Pax Christi!