NOTE: Throughout the Advent season, we’ll post a reflection on the readings for the upcoming Sunday in Advent just a few days before so individuals and groups can reflect in anticipation or incorporate it into their meetings, homilies, etc. The reflection will be available on our homepage through the weekend and then archived on our Advent 2021 webpage.

The reflection below was originally written by Cathy Woodson in 2012 for our Advent reflection booklet, Voices of Hope, Women of Wisdom: Pax Christi USA 40th Anniversary Special Edition Reflections for Advent 2012.

by Cathy Woodson

Micah 5:1-4a | Hebrews 10:5-10 | Luke 1:39-45

“For now his greatness shall reach to the ends of the earth;
he shall be peace” (Micah 5:3-4)

Advent is the season of living with hope and with anticipation of an “arrival.” Our faithfulness creates a sense of wonder to experience the story of Christ’s birth. The prophet Micah tells us “he shall be peace,” giving us another opportunity to seek conversion.

Reading today’s Gospel, we are reminded of Mary’s faithfulness in accepting God’s plan for her. Mary is greeted with opened arms and affirmations when she arrives at her cousin’s home. As Elizabeth shares her joy, Mary’s faith is again affirmed for all of us. How are we allowing ourselves to confirm our call to build justice with peace? Just as Mary and Elizabeth faced disbelief from people in their society, we too face challenges. We have many distractions that impose upon our time, energy, and sense of whose we are. We are pulled in many directions, and it can be exhausting trying to meet all that is demanded of us.

Maybe we can reflect on Mary and Elizabeth and spend time being in an affirming relationship with our guests. As we welcome visitations by family, co-workers, and friends, can we create a sense of authentic joy and faithfulness as experienced by Mary and Elizabeth? Maybe we can take a moment to say a prayer for each person whom we meet during the season, wishing everyone joy and peace, and quietly offering a prayer as a gift. We can include a prayer for each person with whom we are sharing gifts this year. This may be the greatest gift we can share this season.


How can you approach your work for justice and peace so as to help others see themselves acting on their faith?

>> For more Advent resources and reflections, click here.

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