Advent 2016 blog series from the Sisters of Mercy of the America

The Fourth Week of Advent: A Time for Hopeful Waiting

December 16, 2016

By Sister Debbie-Ann Chambers, apostolic novice

“The true light that gives light to everyone was coming into the world” (John 1:9). This year, as we await the coming of the light of Christ, we invite you to reflect on the meaning of Advent through diverse perspectives in our Mercy family. This reflection for the fourth week of Advent is written by Sister Debbie-Ann, a Mercy apostolic novice from Jamaica. Read other reflections in our 2016 Advent series.

hope (1)If you asked me to define Advent, I would say that it is a time of hopeful waiting.

If you also asked me what I am waiting for, or how I am waiting with hope, I’d probably feel a stirring in my heart and tell you of my life’s passion. I would say, I am waiting for the Kingdom of God—for right relationships and freedom for the poor and the captive.

In this time of overwhelming oppression of the poor, racial and ethnic discrimination and all other sorts of prejudice, you might confide in me that you are struggling with hope. I would listen and empathize with the difficulty of living our “already but not yet” belief in the Kingdom of God. Then, I would share this with you: hope, I have learned from my favorite writer, Paulo Freire, is not a wishy-washy virtue, a frivolous illusion or an act of wishful thinking. It is commitment to struggle and a commitment to looking for the opportunities for transformation, no matter the obstacles.  

So, when I say that Advent is a time of hopeful waiting, I mean that it is a time to reflect on what has already been given to us and a time to renew our commitment to the struggle; renew our vision of the Kingdom of God in our current world.

Happy Advent! Happy renewal of your commitment to the struggle! May it be a joyous and peace-filled renewal.

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