The Light Shines in the Darkness

When I was driving to work at this time of the year, I would leave my house in the morning in the darkness and return home in the evening in the darkness. During the day, my workspace was not located near a window so I only saw light on the weekends. If it wasn’t for the Christmas season, I would have been in a funk for months. One of the things I appreciate most about retirement is the sunlight during this Advent Season, a gift from God for those of us who are aging.

Oddly though, when I think of Advent I still think of darkness. Even as bothersome as the constant darkness was for me during the week, it is difficult for me to imagine a world without light, without Jesus. There are certainly people who live in the darkness of despair. Who lack hope and fail to see an end to their suffering.

But during Advent, the season before the birth of Christ, although it is dark it is not without hope. In our darkness we anticipate the birth of our Savior who will bring a renewed life to each of us. This tiny baby is the reason we rejoice and are glad. He is the light of the world.

All things came to be through Him,                                single candle

       And without Him nothing came to be.

What came to be through Him was life,

       And this life was the light of the human race,

The light shines in the darkness,

       And the darkness has not overcome it. JN 1: 3-5

Jesus, be with us during our season of darkness. Lift our spirits in anticipation of your birth. Light our lives, fill us with hope and prepare us to follow You always.

 

Cathy O’Toole  D29BF91F-326B-4778-8E20-A127888D1370.medium

 

Today is a Great Feast: All Souls Day

On the 2nd day of  November each year, the Catholic Church commemorates All Souls Day.  We remember all those who have died, not just the spiritual superstars.

Here is parishioner, Mandy Geyman discussing wbat you can do today to celebrate All Souls

From the earliest days the church has prayed for the deceased. Their judgment is in the hands of God, and we trust in God’s mercy. But we also believe the God cares about us and our concerns, so prayers for our deceased loved ones are appropriate.

The feast day itself is rooted in the second century. In the 10th century, St. Odilo of Cliny established a memorial of all the faithful departed. Rome added the feast to the church’s calendar in the 13th century. In many parts of the world the celebration of this feast day is marked with particular energy, such as el Dia del los Muertos in Mexico.

It’s appropriate to commemorate All Souls Day by praying for those who have gone before us in faith. The feast of All Souls reminds us of our mortality. We are all finite, mortal creatures. We are all loved by God, who has endowed us with an immortal soul. Our ultimate destiny lies in God’s hands, and even death does not separate us from his love. Source:  USCCB

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