Sunday, November 29, 2009

Advent Resolutions

At the beginning of another Advent, after 17 years of ordained ministry in the Diocese of Trenton, I've come to a point where I want to make some resolutions at the start of this new year of grace.

I really don't care if people call me a "Scrooge" or worse...

I really take Advent seriously.

I LOVE Advent.

I BELIEVE in Advent, and its power to help us convert.

Conversion and growth is, and should always be, a part of contemporary Christians. I know that I can be a better person and believer. I know that I need conversion every day and every moment of my life.

And so I here announce:

I am not going to any "Christmas" parties held during the season of Advent.

I don't want to hear any "Christmas" songs before December 24th.

I don't want to hear anybody say: "Merry Christmas" before December 24th, and I will not respond to such greetings, especially in the church setting, until December 24th after the first Mass of Christmas Eve.

Yeah, I know I sound like a "liturgical hard-ass" but I'm getting old. I love the true traditions of the church. I can't stand the fact that the "world" around us says Christmas has already begun.

The Church calls us to celebrate Advent as a season, and Christmas as a season, against the timing of the world.

I think this is the most Counter-Cultural time for Christians. We're called to stand up for our belief that Jesus of Nazareth, born in a poor stable in the backwater town of Bethlehem, is the SAVIOR OF THE WORLD. And so, I don't care about "Santa" or "Holiday" parties and shopping and decorating.

I think Advent is about becoming more like Jesus...

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