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Posts Tagged ‘Advent’

What is a paradox? My dictionary says a paradox is “a situation or statement which seems impossible or is difficult to understand because it contains two opposite facts or characteristics.”

How does a paradox relate to Christmas? If you are going to relate to God you’re going to deal with a lot of paradox, for God’s ways and thinking often defy and confound human ways and thinking. God is not irrational but He often acts in ways that do not conform with worldly expectations.

I remember my blog post two years ago about the paradox. And I’ve just found this video that also visualizes it very well. (Gosh, I always like Igniter Media works!)

Though there are presents still waiting for you to receive, this season is truly about The Gift that you have already been given.

Have a wonderful Christmas Eve! 😀

Thank you, Msgr. Charles Pope.

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Recently my girlfriend informed me about a Christmas – Advent site. It has a whole bunch of good articles, and at that time she showed me one article about the importance of Advent. The article tingled me, because I usually think of Advent as a mere preparation for Christmas. And now I know, more is involved.

Why do we celebrate Advent, then? Because we need it!

The vision of life that Advent gives us is twofold; it looks back to the first coming of Christ at Bethlehem, and it looks to the future when Christ will come again. In the interval between these two events we find meaning for our life as a Christian.

First we celebrate Christ-become-human. We view his life and experience his presence as a human being in our history. Christ came to show us what life can and should be. He gave us true and valid principles by which we can live true and valid lives. But Jesus knew that the human heart could not live in isolation. He formed the Church around the concept of a people held together by love. In that community we discover unlimited possibilities and meaning. Alone we can do nothing. Together we find real meaning.

When Christ left this earth, he did not abandon us. He remains with us in his Spirit, the Church, the sacraments, the Scriptures and each other. He lives in community with us and keeps his vision of life before us.

When Christ comes again, his presence will no longer be hidden behind the signs and symbols of the liturgy or the words of the Scriptures. His presence among us will be revealed in all its fullness, a presence that will never end, a presence that will perfect and complete our community.

That is wonderful! Advent gives us a vision of our lives as Christians.

In his Advent homily, St. Bernard of Clairveaux said that in the interval between the two comings, there lies the third coming of Our Lord “in Spirit and in power.”

We know that there are three comings of the Lord. The third lies between the other two. It is invisible while the other two are visible. In the first coming He was seen on earth, dwelling among men; … in the final coming “all flesh will see the salvation of our God and they will look upon Him whom they have pierced”. The intermediate coming is a hidden one; in it only the elect see the Lord within their own selves, and they are saved. In His first coming our Lord came in our flesh and our weakness; in this middle coming He comes in Spirit and in power; in the final coming he will be seen in glory and in majesty. Because this coming lies between the other two, it is like a road on which we travel from the first coming to the last.

His insight unveils the special truth of this wonderful season of beginning again. He reminds us of all the Lord’s comings and the message we are to proclaim is that Lord is always coming for those who look for Him!

And now that we live in the intermediate time between the first and second comings, we are to be changed by the first and to prepare ourselves for the second. So, let us prepare ourselves worthily to welcome the comings of the Lord. Happy Advent to you, folks! Special thanks to my girl 🙂

“Send down the dew, ye heavens, from above, and let the clouds rain the Just One: let the earth be opened, and bud forth the Redeemer.”

See also:

  1. Waiting for Christmas – 1
  2. Waiting for Christmas – 2

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This post was originally posted in my Facebook note on December 6.

A fat, jolly man with a white beard, dressed in a red suit trimmed with white, and driving a sleigh full of toys drawn through the air by eight reindeer. He is said to visit on Christmas Eve, entering houses through the chimney to leave presents under the Christmas tree and in the stockings of all good children. “Here comes Santa Claus!

Today, December 6, the Church celebrates feast of St. Nicholas, the ‘original’ Santa Claus. Here is some actual story about Saint Nicholas:

One of the most famous stories of the generosity of St. Nicholas says that he threw bags of gold through an open window in the house of a poor man to serve as dowry for the man’s daughters, who otherwise would have been sold into slavery.

The gold is said to have landed in the family’s shoes, which were drying near the fire. This is why children leave their shoes out by the door, or hang their stockings by the fireplace in the hopes of receiving a gift on the eve of his feast.

Hm, I am thinking about buying a pair of extra large shoes, large enough to contained an SUV, and leave it out by the door on Christmas Eve. Now I “better watch out,” be a nice person, because Santa’s “gonna find out who’s naughty and nice.” 😀

See also:

  1. Waiting for Christmas – 1
  2. Waiting for Christmas – 3

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Waiting for Christmas – 1

This post was originally posted in my Facebook note on December 1.

While searching things about Christmas, I found this beautiful writing:

To rescue you from your passions, the Word took on a body…

He was man, but God. David’s offspring, but Adam’s maker. A bearer of flesh, but even so, beyond all body. From a mother, but she a virgin. Comprehensible, but immeasurable.

A manger received him, while a star led the Magi, who so came bearing gifts, and fell on bended knee…

Food was set before him, but he fed thousands and changed the water into wine…

As man he took rest, as God he put to rest the sea.

He was the sacrifice, but the high priest: making an offering, but himself God.

He dedicated his blood to God and cleansed the entire world…He had company with the dead, but he rose from the dead, the bygone he raised up: There is the mortal’s poverty, here the incorporeal’s wealth.

Do not, therefore, dishonor his divinity on account of his human things, but, for the divine’s sake, hold in renown the earthly form into which, thoughtful of you, he formed himself, the incorruptible Son.

Nice! Thank you for posting it!

PS: The source wrote that this writing comes from St. Gregory of Nazianzus, but I hardly found this to be true.

See also:

  1. Waiting for Christmas – 2
  2. Waiting for Christmas – 3

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