December 1: Why Advent?
This Advent, the whole Episcopal Church is invited to journey toward becoming Beloved Community, as together we explore race, reconciliation and healing. Advent may seem like an odd time to focus on racial reconciliation. The world is full of sparkle and twinkling lights; why on earth would anyone want to focus on something as challenging and potentially painful as race?
Advent is a season of preparation for the birth of a savior, and the process of bringing new life into the world is often painful, but the reward can be deep joy and abundant love.
Imagine Mary, young, pregnant, and newly married, on a journey far from her home and family. The journey from Nazareth to Bethlehem would transform her from a child into the mother of the savior of the world, but the journey itself was likely difficult, both emotionally and physically. Once they arrived in Bethlehem, the Christ child was born. His mother, no doubt, labored, pushing through her pain to bring the gift of God’s son into the world.
As you engage this journey toward Beloved Community, there may be moments of discomfort or even twinges of pain. You will have the chance to reflect on your own experience of race and difference and to share those experiences and listen to those of others, which might be difficult. Yet, in this season of expectant waiting and growth, we hope you will discover beauty, joy, new life and new relationships in your community and beyond.