Saturday, November 27, 2010

advent 2010

I've enjoyed the gift of a growing appreciation of and participation in the season of Advent over the past few years.  There are a number of books, websites, and other resources to use as we celebrate this time of year.  Currently I'm enjoying:
The Jesuit Communication Centre in Ireland puts out a booklet of daily readings and considerations for Advent.  They also have guided retreats for Advent that you can download and follow.  Also scroll down the page and take a look at their online prayers and "Living Space," commentaries on the daily scripture readings from the Book of Common Prayer (BCP); I was pleasantly surprised by the level of thought (or prayer, I should say) they put into the entries.

Simply Wait:  Cultivating Stillness in the Season of Advent by Pamela C. Hawkins
Hawkins gives a theme for each week of Advent:  anticipation, hope, patience, and obedience.  Each section is divided into "Responding to the Word," "Readings," and prayers.  I have been looking forward to using this book all year.  I was captivated by the first page:  "ANTICIPATION...Wait with this word for awhile before you turn the page.  Let Anticipation settle into your thoughts.  Let this word soak into your life.  Let it spread across your imagination as you look toward Christmas.  Do not hurry.  Wait.  And when you have taken some time with this word, turn the page."

In previous years I've also enjoyed the book Watch for the Light:  Readings for Advent and Christmas, a collection of daily writings from various authors.  I love the diversity of the authors and the selections, from Meister Eckhart to Sylvia Plath, Bernard of Clairvaux to Annie Dillard, etc. etc. etc.  Readings go from Nov. 24 to Jan. 7, the day after Epiphany.

You might also enjoy this website: which offers a variety of readings from the diverse body of Christ.  The Advent reading includes the scriptures for the week from the BCP. 

You can find the BCP online at - scriptures are under "The Lectionary" - we began Year A on Nov. 28, the first Sunday of Advent 2010.

May we all be able to pay attention, wait, listen, and receive what God has for us in this time.

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