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Monday, December 15, 2008

Advent Check-In?

Meet and Greet is quiet today, taking an Advent rest. Look for introductions on December 29th!

Speaking of Advent, how is your Advent going? Are you too busy? Or, are you finding some pleasant respite from the hectic pace?

Me, I am in the midst of a little of each....busy preparing for Christmas services and yet, with a massage planned for an hour from now, I am also striving to find some quiet.

One of my favorite resources for Advent reflection is "Night Visions" by Jan Richardson.

I tend to read this book every Advent. I love the daily meditations and art work moving through the days and weeks of Advent. Here is her reflection from day one, week one, called, "Darkness."

"Being here.
Say that you have chosen it.
Say that it was your own hand that
turned out the light, your own mouth that
blew out the candle, your own eyes that
closed themselves against the brightness.
Say it was your doing.

Say you needed the shadows, the darkness,
that your eyes had begun to squint at
the brightness, that the light had begun to
make your head buzz. Say your needed the

Say you asked for it. Longed for it.
Say you didn't.
Say it wasn't you who chose it, wasn't
you who reached to turn off the light,
wasn't you who snuffed out the flame, who
covered your eyse.

Say the darkness stole up on you, say it
overtook you, say it clamped its hand over
your mouth before you could scream, its
fingers across your eyes before you could
take one last look at the light. Say it jimmied
your door in the middle of the day,
say it climbed through your window in
middle of the night and took sunrise
with it.

Or say it simple called to you from
where it stood in the doorway, looking longingly
at you and winking its great pale eye.

Say you followed it home."

She also has two blogs: the painted prayerbook and the Advent Door.

What Advent resources are you using this year?


  1. Mompriest: Jan Richardson is my fave too - have Night Visions next to my desk for reading each day. Am glad to find her blogs for even more.

  2. This has been an intriguing Advent so far - probably because i've been attempting to post something "adventy" everyday - which has kept me focused on "all things advent" :) and in order to search through books and devotionals and websites and past posts i've spent a majority of this advent pondering on the concept of waiting & the paradox that is Advent!

    Not sure if i would do this again next year as i'm still wondering if i will make it through another week of finding adventy things to say but it has been well worth the time & effort spent...

  3. Ann, I like the painted prayer book as a resource of Sunday sermons....

    Roberta, we'll stop by your blog and see what you've found!

  4. I have been reflecting on the RC daily mass readings, particularly the OT ones from Isaiah--often catching up on a couple days at a time. At dinner when we light the Advent candle we sing the first verse of O Come O Come Emmanuel, and bedtime prayers are usually Advent hymns--Soon and Very Soon being the little one's favorite. (Though I violated my own Advent police principles the other night to help her rehearse Little Town of Bethlehem for the pageant). It's actually kind of Advent-y, when you think about it--"O holy Child of Bethlehem, descend to us we pray; Cast out our sin and enter in, be born in us today...O Come to us, abide with us, our Lord Emmanuel." It's a beautiful melody, and I have happy memories of singing it for my voice final freshman year of college. Although now that I have given birth and helped others do so several times each, I flinch at the docetic silence of Jesus' arrival in the third verse!

  5. Resources for Advent... simple ones for which I am most grateful and most desperate these days...silence, pen, paper, and the Spirit. I love-love-love writing during Advent. I find the time such a call to a sensory/sensual appreciation of all that surrounds us. Sitting with that is another resource. For me, it is a time of considering...

    Advent III, 2008


    Despite, or rather
    perhaps because of,
    a weighty preponderance
    of wide-spread reasons
    for acting otherwise,
    we are called to rejoice.

    Called to find a crumble,
    how ever fine,
    of pungent and potent
    spice-infused gaudete.

    (It settles, wanting sifting, I’ve found,
    in the omnipresent dust of living
    that tucks in pocket corners.)

    Denying nothing,
    I am called to turn out
    my pleats and folds,
    shaking free
    the perfumed and flaring
    glitter of hopeful wonder
    that gathers there
    waiting to be disturbed.



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