Showing posts from November, 2015

Advent - the Season of Hope

Advent Week 1 This week we light the first candle in the Advent wreath. “We light this candle in hope, the bright hope of Jesus, the Christ.” Psalm 25:1-10 To you, O LORD, I lift up my soul. O my God, in you I trust; do not let me be put to shame; do not let my enemies exult over me. Do not let those who wait for you be put to shame; let them be ashamed who are wantonly treacherous. Make me to know your ways, O LORD; teach me your paths. Lead me in your truth, and teach me, for you are the God of my salvation; for you I wait all day long. Be mindful of your mercy, O LORD, and of your steadfast love, for they have been from of old. Do not remember the sins of my youth or my transgressions; according to your steadfast love remember me, for your goodness' sake, O LORD! Good and upright is the LORD; therefore he instructs sinners in the way. He leads the humble in what is right, and teaches the humble his way. All the paths of the LORD are steadfast lov

Waiting - The Season of Advent

Here we are in the season of Advent.  Regardless of what the displays in the stores, the hype in the commercials, and the music on the radio stations might want us all to believe, Christmas has not come. In the Christian calendar, the four full weeks plus before Christmas Day is the season of Advent, the season of waiting.  This season reminds us to take time to consider what it is that God is about to do.  This season encourages us to breathe deeply and experience the beauty of the divine presence in the ordinariness of our everyday.  This season asks us to struggle to live into the anticipation of the not yet.  Let us not hurry to Bethlehem losing ourselves in the tinsel, trimmings, lights, and bows and in so doing missing the growth that can be experienced along the journey toward the incarnation.  Join in this trek over the next several weeks, and may we find ourselves surprised by what we find along the way. I look forward to seeing you.  November 29 - the Candle of Hope December

Saints Dressed in Street Clothes

We look for saints in all the wrong places. We expect to see them venerated in paintings or memorialized in stone. We want them to stay placidly commemorated and confined to such spaces. They are much more sanitary that way. However, what we need are saints dressed in street clothes living next door. Saints who live beautifully messy ordinary lives buying groceries, paying bills, supporting neighbors, traveling to and from work, celebrating victories, grieving loss, believing, and doubting. These saints are the normal people who experience and reveal the presence of the divine in the everyday. Ruth Baldwin is one of those saints. I don't know how often Ruth celebrated mass, and I have no idea if she regularly prayed her rosary. What I do know is that she had more than enough love for all of her children as well as the dozens and dozens who spent hot summer afternoons on her screened in porch eating homemade fruit juice popsicles. Ruth understood what it meant to offer compa