The season of Advent begins a new year for the Church. During Advent, the world accelerates into the busyness and commercialism that attempts to define Christmas. In contrast, for the next few weeks, Christians are called to wait in hopeful anticipation for the coming of Emmanuel—“God with us.” During Advent, the themes of hope, peace and rejoicing ring throughout the Scripture readings for this special season.
Each year, the coming of a new season of Advent helps give me a better perspective on the current times, which are usually in need of a renewed sense of hope, peace and joy. Advent offers us the chance to once more focus on the promises of God with the coming of Emmanuel.
Last week, on the First Sunday of Advent, I experienced a wonderful sign of hope and joy as Sr. Elizabeth Jackson, OP, professed perpetual vows in the Dominican Sisters of Peace. Monsignor Frank P. Lane celebrated the Mass, reminding the Sisters and all who were present that consecrated religious life, in all its forms, is, indeed, a joyful sign of hope for the world. Through their service to God and the people of God, they can help witness to the world the transformation that is possible because of the birth of Jesus Christ.
The Dominican Sisters of Peace rejoice and celebrate this Advent sign of hope in Sister Elizabeth Jackson’s profession of perpetual vows and service to God for her whole life. I invite you to enjoy a few of the pictures from the Mass and the Rite of Profession.
As we prepare to enter this second week of Advent, I also invite you to consider the question: in what do you rejoice and find hope in this season of hopeful anticipation?