Posted by: Peadar Ban | August 31, 2012


How important is the life of a little baby to you?  How would you, awaiting what we call the “blessed event” of the birth of a child, prepare yourself, your home, your family, for such a thing?  Can you remember how you did it in the past, or how your parents may have done it, friends, relatives.  We have neighbors who have just brought home their third baby, a little girl.  We know others who await the arrival soon of another little one into their families.  Their lives these past months have been, variously, times of preparation, a little anxiety and waiting; times full of baby showers, nursery furnishings and doctor’s visits.  Every time we see them, we see the little ones looking curiously at their Moms, in a mixture of wonder and hope and, of course, curiosity mixed with some kind of anticipatory excitement and joy.  There is nothing like the birth of a child, now, is there?

Soon will come the time of the little child’s arrival, and all will rejoice.

There will be another Child born.  The whole world awaits this One’s Birth.  Or does it?  Soon, just before the pumpkins are taken from the doorsteps, the world will begin its own preparation to celebrate This One’s arrival … or, rather, to prepare for something quite different than the arrival of any ordinary kind of child.  The preparations will continue accelerating in an intensity of noise, fevered buying and frantic spending until it all expires on Christmas morning and sputters out sometime before noon when the first football game begins.

The internationally active Families of Nazareth Movement offers you another and far more spiritually effective kind of preparation in the form of  a series of four reflections based on selections from books published by In the Arms of Mary Foundation (the publishing arm of the FNM here in the U.S.).  This series, entitled “Awaiting Pure Love” is available for free download and also as a paperback booklet from The Christian Book Corner.  Meant as a kind of Advent preparation for the Birth of Christ, this excellent series is intended for use by  parish groups and private individuals to make ready , to make room for Christ, not only at Christmas, but throughout the whole year.

The effectiveness of this “Awaiting Pure Love” reflection series has spread by word of mouth from diocese to diocese across the country since it was first introduced in the Archdiocese of St. Louis several years ago.  Each of Advent’s four weeks is spent in preparation based on a topic and readings having to do with one’s life with Christ — who wishes to be born into our hearts not just once a year, but every day:  the real Christmas.








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