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Start Education for Justice Advent Reflections 2009 Theme: Preparing for the Prince of Peace… Reconciling, Forgiving, Healing About the Calendar: Using.

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Presentation on theme: "Start Education for Justice Advent Reflections 2009 Theme: Preparing for the Prince of Peace… Reconciling, Forgiving, Healing About the Calendar: Using."— Presentation transcript:

1 Start Education for Justice Advent Reflections 2009 Theme: Preparing for the Prince of Peace… Reconciling, Forgiving, Healing About the Calendar: Using reconciliation as our lens, we shine a light on places in our own hearts and in our world where forgiveness, reconciliation and healing are needed. We take concrete steps to prepare for the Prince of Peace and the indwelling of love. God...has given us the ministry of reconciliation. That is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, Not counting their trespasses against them, And entrusting the message of reconciliation to us. So we are ambassadors for Christ, Since God is making his appeal through us; We entreat you on behalf of Christ, Be reconciled to God. - 2 Cor 5: 18

2 On Earth…..Peace 8 7 5 11 20 1918172122 24 141610 1 9 1315 23 12 3 25 4 2 6 …On that day, a shoot shall sprout from the stump of Jesse, and from his roots a bud shall blossom. Exit

3 Scripture Quote: On that day, a shoot shall sprout from the stump of Jesse, and from his roots a bud shall blossom. The Spirit of the Lord shall rest upon him: a Spirit of wisdom and of understanding. Is 11:1-2 Reflection on Reconciliation: "Because sin has impacted the world in its totality, including its social institutions, and because Christ's salvation has come to all of life, Christians are called to struggle for the healing and wholeness of the world." - Nicholas Wolterstorff Prayer: God of mercy and consolation, guide my efforts in seeking wisdom and understanding. Grant me the courage to reconcile the inner divisions in my life and in so doing, contribute to healing the divisions in the world. 1. Readings of the Day: Isaiah 11:1-10 Psalm 72:1-2,7-8,12-13,17 Luke 10:21-24 Tuesday, December 1, 2009 Close Window Repent

4 Scripture Quote: The Lord God will wipe away the tears from all faces; the reproach of the people God will remove from the whole earth; for the Lord has spoken. -Isaiah 25:8 Reflection on Reconciliation: The gospel teaches us that only the power of God's love can change our hearts and make us triumph over the power of sin and division." -Pope Benedict XVI Prayer: Remove the sting of regret from my heart. Open new space within me to hear anew your call to forgive and extend forgiveness to others. 2. Readings of the Day: Isaiah 25:6-10 Psalm 23: 1-6 Matthew 15:29-37 Wednesday, December 2, 2009 Close Window Heal regret

5 Scripture Quote: Open to me the gates of justice; I will enter them and give thanks to the Lord. -Psalm 118:19 Reflection on Reconciliation: "Only one thing is necessary: that the sinner at least leave the door of his or her heart ajar, the rest will be done by God. Everything begins and ends in Gods mercy." - Pope John Paul II Prayer: I ask for the grace to be open, to set my defenses and resistances aside. Where I remain in darkness, show Your light. Where I am closed in on myself, grant me your boundless mercy. 3. Readings of the Day: Isaiah 26:1-6 Psalm 118:1,8,9,19-21, 25-27 Matthew 7:21,24-27 Thursday December 3, 2009 St. Francis Xavier, priest Close Window Open up

6 Scripture Quote: For the tyrant will be no more and the arrogant will have gone; all who are alert to do evil will be cut off, those whose mere word condemns a man, who ensnare his defender at the gate and leave the just man with an empty claim. -Isaiah 29:20 Reflection on Reconciliation: Only God's love, able to make brothers and sisters of people of all races and cultures, can heal the painful divisions, ideological conflict, economic unbalance, and violence which still oppresses humanity. -John Paul II, May 20, 2002 Prayer: May your love release me from the insecurity of arrogance and the misuse of power. Heal those divisions that thwart the deeper communion I desire. 4. Readings of the Day: Isaiah 29:17-24 Psalm 27:1,4,13-14 Matthew 9:27-31 Friday, December 4, 2009 St. John of Damascus Close Window Be humble

7 Scripture Quote: Go to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. As you go, make this proclamation: The Kingdom of heaven is at hand. Cure the sick, raise the dead, cleanse the lepers, drive out demons. Without cost you have received; without cost you are to give. – Matthew 10:6-8 Reflection on Reconciliation: Original sin is the universal and socialized withdrawal from the mystery of which we yet continue to draw all our meaning and value. Original sin is the socialized truncation of human life, the systematic reduction of the child of mystery to the banal world of our own making. – Sebastian Moore Prayer: Help me resist the temptation to withdraw from life when things get difficult or life gets challenging. Help me restore my balance and equilibrium in You. 5. Readings of the Day: Isaiah 30: 19-21,23-26 Psalm 147: 1-6 Matthew 9:35-10:1, 5-8 Saturday December 5, 2009 Close Window Open your eyes

8 Scripture Quote: John went throughout the whole region of the Jordan, proclaiming a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins…Prepare the way of the Lord, make straight his paths. Luke 3:1-6 Reflection on Reconciliation: "The Gospel teaches us that reconciliation, true reconciliation, can only be the fruit of conversion, a change of heart, a new way of thinking. -Pope Benedict XVI Prayer: Take the crooked paths of my false starts and half-hearted efforts and show me how to walk in Your way. Heal the broken places in my life. Restore my hope and joy. 6. Readings of the Day: Baruch 5:1-9 Psalm 126: 1-6 Philippians 1:4-6,8-11 Luke 3:1-6 Second Sunday of Advent Sunday December 6, 2009 Close Window Reconcile

9 Scripture Quote: Because of the crowd, the men went up on the roof and lowered the paralytic on a mat through the tiles into the middle in front of Jesus. When Jesus saw their faith, he said, As for you, your sins are forgiven. -Luke 5:19-20 Reflection on Reconciliation: In the end, the deepest question each of us faces is the question of where we will point our lives, the question of direction. Sin as a direction-possibility and its blessed alternative of a direction pointed toward God: These alternatives are, in the end, what life is all about. –Timothy OConnell Prayer: Sin is a disruption of the unity God desires. Remove the obstacles that prevent me from being a loving presence, a healing force for peace. 7. Readings of the Day: Isaiah 35:1-10 Psalm 85: 9-14 Luke 5:17-26 Monday, December 7, 2009 St. Ambrose Close Window Persevere

10 Scripture Quote: In love, God destined us for adoption to himself through Jesus Christ, in accord with the favor of Gods will, for the praise of the glory of Gods grace that God granted us in the beloved. – Ephesians 1:5-6 Reflection on Reconciliation: "God is calling us to acknowledge the power of Gods presence within us," to take as our own "the gift of his love and forgiveness, and to become messengers of that merciful love within our families and communities, at school and in the workplace, in every sector of social and political life. -Pope Benedict XVI, March 22, 2009 Prayer: Help me to live in Your presence and witness to others the love and mercy You have shown me. 8. Readings of the Day: Genesis 3: 9-15, 20 Psalm 98:1-4 Ephesians 1:3-6, 11-12 Luke 1:26-38 Tuesday December 8, 2009 Feast of the Immaculate Conception Close Window Ask for Grace

11 Scripture Quote: God pardons all your iniquities, God heals all your ills. God redeems your life from destruction, God crowns you with kindness and compassion. – Psalm 103 Reflection on Reconciliation: "Biblically rooted reconciliation is not just personal, but encompasses the interpersonal, the spiritual and the social. Within the scope of a ministry of reconciliation is a broad range of formal and informal activities intended to overcome division and all forms and consequences of violence. -Miroslav Volf Prayer: Let me not be discouraged by my weaknesses but receive Your healing love and rejoice in Your mercy. Heal all division, restore broken trust, end the misuse of force and the tendency toward violence. 9. Readings of the Day: Isaiah 40: 25-31 Psalm 103:1-4,8,10 Matthew 11:28-30 Wednesday December 9, 2009 St. Juan Diego Close Window Show compassion

12 Scripture Quote: I am the Lord, your God, who grasp your right hand; It is I who say to you, Fear not, I will help you. – Isaiah 41:13 Reflection on Reconciliation: Everywhere, where hatred, injustice and pain reign; where a lack of respect is seen toward the priceless gift of life and the dignity of humans; where the wave of terrorism grows and the culture of death holds sway -- there is needed the grace of Divine Mercy, which quiets the heart, creates peace, returns the sense of human dignity, and leads to justice. -Archbishop Tadeusz Kondrusiewicz Prayer: Help me to know when to hold on and when to let go. I trust in your guiding hand. Remove the fear that prevents me from extending the hand of forgiveness to others. 10. Readings of the Day: Isaiah 41:13-20 Psalm 145: 1, 9-13 Matthew 11:11-15 Thursday, December 10, 2009 Close Window Grasp reality

13 Scripture Quote: Blessed the one who follows not the counsel of the wicked nor walks in the way of sinners, nor sits in the company of the insolent, but delights in the law of the Lord and meditates on it day and night. – Psalm 1:1-2 Reflection on Reconciliation: Gods passionate love for Gods people – for humanity – is a forgiving love. It is so great that it turns God against himself, Gods love against Gods justice… So great is Gods love for humanity that by becoming human God follows man even into death, and so reconciles justice and love. – Pope Benedict XVI, DCE, 10 Prayer: When its easier to wander down the path of apathy, guide me to loving concern. When I am too discouraged to try again, restore my will. 11. Readings of the Day: Isaiah 48:17-19 Psalm 1:1-4,6 Matthew 11:16-19 Friday, December 11, 2009 St. Damascus I Close Window Reflect

14 Scripture Quote: My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord; my spirit rejoices in God my savior. – Luke 1:38 Reflection on Reconciliation: In the presence of God, nothing stands between God and us – we are forgiven. But we cannot feel Gods presence if anything is allowed to stand between ourselves and others. – Dag Hammarskjold Prayer: In the sureness of your love make my life a proclamation of your glory. Through my mistakes and failures, reveal your power. From petty grievances, free me. 12. Readings of the Day: Zechariah 2: 14-17 or Revelation 11:12, 12:1-6,10 Judith 13: 18-19 Luke 1:26-38 Saturday, December 12, 2009 Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe Close Window Proclaim

15 Scripture Quote: The crowds asked John the Baptist, What should we do? He said to them in reply, Whoever has two cloaks should share with the person who has none. And whoever has food should do likewise. Luke 3:10-11 Reflection on Reconciliation: Caritas transcends justice and completes it in the logic of giving and forgiving. The earthly city is promoted not merely by relationships of rights and duties, but to an even greater and more fundamental extent by relationships of gratuitousness, mercy and communion. Caritas always manifests God's love in human relationships as well, it gives theological and salvific value to all commitment for justice in the world. – Benedict XVI, Caritas in Veritate, 6 Prayer: Help me to listen attentively to the prophets in my life. Disturb what is too complacent in me and move my heart to action. 13. Readings of the Day: Zephaniah 3:14-18 Isaiah 12:2-6 Philippians 4:4-7 Luke 3:10-18 Third Sunday of Advent Sunday, December 13, 2009 Close Window Commit

16 Scripture Quote: Good and upright is the Lord; thus he shows sinners the way. He guides the humble to justice, he teaches the humble his way. – Psalm 25:8-9 Reflection on Reconciliation: Nothing in our lives is outside the realm of Gods judgment and mercy. By hiding parts of our story, not only from our own consciousness but also from Gods eye, we claim a divine role for ourselves; we become judges of our own past and limit mercy to our own fears. Thus we disconnect ourselves from our own suffering but also from Gods suffering for us. – Henri Nouwen Prayer: Help me to walk humbly with my human limitations. Grant me Your grace to guide and direct my path and teach me Your ways. 14. Readings of the Day: Numbers 24:7, 15-17 Psalm 25: 4-9 Matthew 21:23-27 Monday, December 14, 2009 St. John of the Cross Close Window Listen

17 Scripture Quote: The Lord confronts the evildoers, to destroy remembrance of them from the earth. When the just cry out, the Lord hears them, and from all their distress he rescues them. – Psalm 34:17-18 Reflection on Reconciliation: Forgive me, most gracious Lord, if this day I have done or said anything to increase the pain of the world. – F.B. Meyer Prayer: Help me to listen deeply and to quiet the distractions that steal my attention and energy from You. May I listen today at a depth that frees others from the burdens they carry and bring your healing love. 15. Readings of the Day: Zephaniah 3:1-2, 9-13 Psalm 34:2-3,6-7,17-19, 23 Matthew 21:28-32 Tuesday December 15, 2009 Close Window Confront injustice

18 Scripture Quote: Let justice descent, O heavens, like dew from above, like gentle rain let the skies drop it down. Let the earth open and salvation bud forth; let justice also spring up! I, the Lord, have created this. – Isaiah 45:8 Reflection on Reconciliation: "All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting humanitys sins against them. And God has committed to us the message of reconciliation." - 2 Cor 5:18 Prayer: Send a gentle rain into those parched places yearning to see a new start. Help me move beyond past regrets and start anew. 16. Readings of the Day: Isaiah 45:6-8, 18, 21-25 Psalm 85:9-14 Luke 7:18-23 Wednesday, December 16, 2009 Close Window Bloom

19 Scripture Quote: The mountains shall yield peace for the people, and the hills justice. He shall defend the afflicted among the people, save the children of the poor. Justice shall flower in his days, and profound peace, till the moon be no more. May he rule from sea to sea, and from the river to the ends of the earth. –Psalm 72:3-4,7-8 Reflection on Reconciliation: "Living by the truth takes time, effort and perseverance: it has to begin in our own hearts, in the small daily sacrifices required if we are to be faithful to God's law, in the little acts by which we demonstrate that we love our neighbors, all our neighbors, regardless of race, ethnicity or language, and by our readiness to work with them to build together on foundations that will endure. – Pope Benedict XVI Prayer: Show me the truth that can free me from all that holds me back from loving more deeply and more freely. 17. Readings of the Day: Genesis 49:2, 8-10 Psalm 72:1-4, 7-8, 17 Matthew 1:1-17 Thursday, December 17, 2009 Close Window Live by truth

20 Scripture Quote: O God, with your judgment endow the king, and with your justice, the kings son; He shall govern your people with justice and your afflicted ones with judgment. For he shall rescue the poor when he cries out, and the afflicted when he has no one to help him. -Psalm 72 Reflection on Reconciliation: Suffering is the human struggle with and against pain. It is the experience of the breakdown of our systems of meaning and our stories about ourselves, and the struggle to restore those senses of safety and selfhood. Suffering only becomes redemptive when we struggle against these corroding powers and rebuild ourselves in spite of the pain we are experiencing. – Robert Schreiter Prayer: In times when we feel lost in our own frailty and affliction, restore our hope and remind us that our deepest communion and hope for healing is found in You. 18. Readings of the Day: Jeremiah 23: 5-8 Psalm 72:1-2, 12-13, 18-19 Matthew 1:18-25 Friday, December 18, 2009 Close Window Be attentive

21 Scripture Quote: I will treat of the mighty works of the LORD; O God, I will tell of your singular justice. O God, you have taught me from my youth, and till the present I proclaim your wondrous deeds. -Psalm 71: 16-17 Reflection on Reconciliation: Put aside your hatred and animosity. Take pains to refrain from sharp words. If they escape your lips, do not be ashamed to let your lips produce the remedy, since they have caused the wounds. Pardon one another so that later on you will not remember the injury. – Francis of Paola -15th Century Prayer: Today, help me to use only those words that can lift someones spirits or soothe someones pain. Let me be the first to extend an olive branch to others. 19. Readings of the Day: Judges 13:2-7, 24-25 Psalm 71:3-6, 16-17 Luke 1:5-25 Saturday December 19, 2009 Close Window Learn

22 Scripture Quote: Lord, make us turn to you ; let us see your face and we shall be saved. You brought a vine out of Egypt; you drove away the nations and planted it. You cleared the ground; it took root and filled the land. -Psalm 80: 8-10 Reflection on Reconciliation: Be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you. – Ephesians 4:32 Prayer: Forgive me for the times I have been careless, lacking respect for all you have created. Open my eyes to the beauty that surrounds me so that I may live with grounded in gratitude. 20. Readings of the Day: Micah 5:1-4 Psalm 80: 2-3,15-6,18-19 Hebrews 10:5-10 Luke 1:39-45 Fourth Sunday of Advent Sunday December 20, 2009 Close Window Be Tender

23 Scripture Quote: Fear not, O Zion, be not discouraged! The Lord your God is in your midst a mighty savior; God will rejoice over you with gladness, and renew you in Gods love. -Zephaniah 3: Reflection on Reconciliation: No matter how far we have wandered, no matter how much damage we have inflicted on ourselves, God still loves us and still wants what is good for us. Thats why God never lets us be fulfilled by anything other than God. Thats why God continues to offer us forgiveness. – Archbishop Daniel Pilarczyk Prayer: When I am discouraged and weighed down, restore my vision and show me how to draw on Your strength Renew me in Your love. 21. Readings of the Day: Song of Songs 2:8-14 Zephaniah 3:14-18 Psalm 33:2-3,11-12,20-21 Luke 1:39-45 Monday, December 21, 2009 Close Window Take heart

24 Scripture Quote: God has mercy on those who fear God in every generation. God has shown the strength of his arm, and has scattered the proud in their conceit. God has cast down the mighty from their thrones and has lifted up the lowly. – Luke1: Reflection on Reconciliation: Sin is an unused, unfashionable word, but the facts of life (including my own) as I look at them –the betrayals, the forgetfulness, the selfishness, the ego- centricity –are but the history of humankind written small. There is only one answer to such a vision: It must be accepted. I must simply turn it over to nothing short of grace. – Joseph Sittler, Theologian Prayer: Show me the way to bring peace, to be still, to trust in Your grace. Turn over those places of betrayal, selfishness and sin and prepare a space for peace. 22. Readings of the Day: 1 Samuel 1:24-28 1 Samuel 2:1,4-8 Luke 1:46-56 Tuesday, December 22, 2009 Close Window Show mercy

25 Scripture Quote: Good and upright is the LORD; thus he shows sinners the way. He guides the humble to justice, he teaches the humble his way. All the paths of the LORD are kindness and constancy toward those who keep his covenant and his decrees. -Psalm 25 Reflection on Reconciliation: Forgiveness and compassion hold hands like sisters and call forth a strength that relies one on the other. Our actions and behavior are influenced by our security or lack of it, our frustrations, and usually our compulsions. To under- stand that we each do the best with the maturity we have enables us to allow each other our inevitable mistakes and to practice the art of true forgiveness. -Noela Evans Prayer: Open my hands and release my grip on fear, insecurity or control. Show me the path of compassion and love. 23. Readings of the Day: Malachi 3:1-4, 23-24 Psalm 25:4-5,8-10, 14 Luke 1:57-66 Wednesday, December 23, 2009 St. John of Kanty Close Window Seek humility

26 Scripture Quote: In the tender compassion of our God the dawn from on high shall break upon us, to shine on those who dwell in darkness and the shadow of death, and to guide our feet into the way of peace. -Luke 1:78-80 Reflection on Reconciliation: The days are coming, says the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel… I will put my law within them, and I will write it on their hearts I will be their God, and they shall be my people…for I will forgive their iniquity, and remember their sin no more. – Jeremiah 31:31,34 Prayer: Break through the darkness in my life and in our world. Let Your light cast out all fear. Let justice and peace be born anew in me. 24. Readings of the Day: 2 Samuel 7:1-5, 8-12, 14, 16 Psalm 89: 2-5, 27, 29 Luke 1:67-79 Thursday, December 24, 2009 Christmas Eve Close Window Wait

27 Thursday, December 25, 2009 Christmas Close Window

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