Advent: Unprepared to be Prepared

A Season of Preparation, Holy Waiting, and Hopeful Anticipation

First Sunday of Advent


It's the First Week of Advent, but you wouldn't know it at our house. The wreath and calendar are still packed away in the basement. I have made no plans for what additions I will make to my prayer life for the next few weeks. Apart from the fantastic seasonal nail art I helped my 7 year old with last night, I have not even discussed the season of Advent with my children.


advent nail art
Advent nail art gives a whole new meaning to wearing your faith on your sleeve!

The wreath lighting at Mass this morning made me realize that I had procrastinated too long. Advent has started, and I'm not ready.


Then came this morning's social media onslaught. My news feeds were filled with blog posts, book reviews, youtube videos, and list after list of the best ways to enter into the season...


 

Choosing a 2016 Advent Calendar

This week, the Church begins the season of Advent, the first season of a new liturgical year and the time we set aside to prepare for the coming of Christ: both his coming into the world at Christmas and his return in glory at the end of time.


One challenge facing us—and parents especially— is keeping Advent as its own season, while all around us, the world seems steeped in Christmas, which for us doesn’t begin until Christmas Eve. With all the shopping, entertaining, and advertising we have to contend with, how do we keep Advent as a time of prayerful preparation for the Lord?

Accompaniment & Politics

Ten Tips on Dialogue from Pope Francis

In Amoris Laetitia, Pope Francis calls dialogue “essential” for family life. His guidelines on dialogue are easily applicable to civil society as well.


Can you imagine how this election cycle might be different if we challenged ourselves, candidates, political parties, commentators, and others to follow Pope Francis’s advice?


1.  Recognize the real importance and dignity of the other person.


Recognize others’ right “to think as they do and to be happy.” Pope Francis challenges us to acknowledge the values of the other’s “deepest concerns” and what he or she is trying to say (no. 138).


 

Pray Your Way to an Evangelizing Heart

At it's core, the New Evangelization has everything to do with this question: Do I have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ?


If we want to be intentional disciples who live the New Evanglization in our parishes, schools, workplaces, and homes, we must begin by deepening our own relationships with God.


A central tenet of Pope Benedict XVI's teaching on the New Evangelization focused on the centrality of prayer in this mission. Benedict XVI understands prayer as holding a two-fold significance in evangelization:

Holy Week with Dante

I have been wanting to read Dante Alighieri’s Divine Comedy for some time, but have always been too busy to begin. However, after learning of Pope Francis’ high valuation of the poem, I knew that I could no longer delay.



Through his writings, Dante, is a man who invites us to regain the path of our human journey and the hope to once again see the bright horizon where shines the full dignity of the human person.



Happily, I have found the poem to be much more understandable and enlightening than I had envisioned. Despite its Medieval nature, the poem ignites the deadened imagination and reminds the reader of the undeniable human desire for God.


Dante’s Divine Comedy begins with Inferno, which describes the principle character’s journey through hell. I began Inferno near the beginning of Lent and have found it to be an excellent aide to Lenten preparations for confession. Journeying through the various rings of hell, and the corresponding human sins, invites the reader to make an interior journey into the depth of one’s own soul.


Dante’s punishments are carefully crafted to reflect the underlying nature of unholy human behaviors. The vivid images compel the reader to determine if one’s current state of being corresponds to the state of the punished sinners.


For example, Dante’s pilgrim encounters a group of souls who lived their life with no real purpose. They were too cowardly, or too lazy, to devote themselves completely to God or even to adamantly resist Him. As the pilgrim watches, he sees a blank banner go by:

Contact Us.

  • Write us.

    941 Starboard Ct.
    Oshkosh, WI 54901
  • Call us.

    (920) 509-0204
  • Email us.

    info@burningheartsdisciples.org
  • Follow us.

    round-white-facebook-icon-25716 round-white-twitter-icon-25856 round-white-pinterest-icon-25908
  • Burning Hearts Disciples is a tax exempt 501(c)(3) and an Approved Lay Catholic Organization of the Diocese of Green Bay.

Recent Tweets.

@BurningHeartsD

Evangelizing during #Advent: Cultivate an “intentional attitude of waiting.” Ask the Holy Spirit to show you one p… twitter.com/i/web/status/9…

@BurningHeartsD

RT @BpDavidRicken: Jesus, we do not know when You will return again. Whenever that is, prepare our hearts so that we may always be ready an…