With evening prayer last Sunday we lit the second candle on our Advent wreath. There was something comforting about that added light in the midst of the winter darkness. It was almost as though it was saying, “All will be well, and all will be well, and all manner of things will be well” (as says Julian of Norwich). Although the darkness of the pandemic persists and grows, when we sit in quiet prayer we find the hope and the promise that indeed “all will be well.” With the pandemic, how that will happen in many ways is actually up to us. The cautions medical personnel promote — wear a mask, socially distance with anyone outside your own bubble, wash your hands frequently — might seem to be small, insignificant actions. However, our love of neighbor as well as the curtailing of the virus is tested by our compliance with them.
The Advent season is all about love, how much God loves us, how we are called to love our neighbor as ourselves and how far we are willing to go to show that love. Could we actually go as far as Jesus becoming one of us or go as far as some of our nurses and other medical personnel, who are offering their lives in service to the ill and dying? Will we practice the actions that might mean that another life could be saved?
As Advent continues, the light of the Advent wreath will grow. May the light of wisdom and understanding grow in us as well, along with the courage and perseverance to act on them.
– Blog entry by Sister Joyce Lehman