Creighton University's Online Ministries

The Third Week of Advent

Each day of Advent, 
we offer a brief Daily Advent Prayer. 
Simply choose one of the days below. 

Before using 
the Daily Advent Prayer,
 click on the link below to read a
Guide to this Daily Advent Prayer.


Halfway through Advent:
Have I missed it?

Praying for Peace with
Elizabeth and Mary

 

One to Two Minute Audio Reflections for Advent

 Daily Advent Prayer:
SUNDAY
MONDAY
TUESDAY
WEDNESDAY
THURSDAY
FRIDAY
SATURDAY
 

Mary said:
 “My being proclaims 
 the greatness of the Lord,
my spirit finds joy 
in God my savior, 
For he has looked upon 
his servant in her lowliness;
all ages to come shall 
call me blessed. 
God who is mighty 
has done great things for me,
holy is his name;
His mercy is from age to age
on those who fear him.

He has shown 
might with his arm;
he has confused the proud 
in their inmost thoughts.

He has deposed the mighty 
from their thrones
 and raised the lowly 
to high places.
The hungry he has given 
every good thing,
while the rich 
he has sent empty away.
He has upheld Israel his servant,
ever mindful of his mercy;
Even as he promised our fathers,
promised Abraham and 
his descendants forever.”
Luke 1, 46-50

Gaudete Week

Our week begins with “Gaudete Sunday.” Gaudete means “rejoice” in Latin.  It comes from the first word of the Entrance antiphon on Sunday.  The spirit of joy that begins this week comes from the words of Paul, “The Lord is near.”  This joyful spirit is marked by the third candle of our Advent wreath, which is rose colored, and the rose colored vestments often used at the Eucharist.

The second part of Advent begins on December 17th each year - this year, in 2014, it is Wednesday of the Third Week of Advent.  For the last eight days before Christmas, the plan of the readings changes.  The first readings are still from the prophesies, but now the gospels are from the infancy narratives of Matthew and Luke.  We read the stories of faithful women and men who prepared the way for our salvation.  We enter into the story of how Jesus' life began.  These stories are filled with hints of what his life will mean for us.  Faith and generosity overcome impossibility.  Poverty and persecution reveal glory.

Preparing our Hearts and asking for Grace

We prepare this week by feeling the joy.  We move through this week feeling a part of the waiting world that rejoices because our longing has prepared us to believe the reign of God is close at hand.  And so we consciously ask:

Prepare our hearts
and remove the sadness
that hinders us from feeling
the joy and hope
which his presence
will bestow.

Each morning this week, in that brief moment we are becoming accustomed to, we want to light a third inner candle.  Three candles, going from expectation, to longing, to joy.  They represent our inner preparation, or inner perspective.  In this world of “conflict and division,” “greed and lust for power,” we begin each day this week with a sense of liberating joy.  Perhaps we can pause, breathe deeply and say,

“My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord,
     my spirit rejoices in God my savior.”

Each day this week, we will continue to go through our everyday life, but we will experience the difference our faith can bring to it.  We are confident that the grace we ask for will be given us.  We will encounter sin - in our own hearts and in our experience of the sin of the world.  We can pause in those moments, and feel the joy of the words,

“You are to name him Jesus, 
  because he will save his people 
  from their sins.” Matthew 1:21

We may experience the Light shining into dark places of our lives and showing us patterns of sinfulness, and inviting us to experience God's mercy and healing.  Perhaps we wish to celebrate the Sacrament of Reconcilation this week.  We may want to make gestures of reconcilation with a loved one, relative, friend or associate.  With more light and joy, it is easier to say, “I'm sorry; let's begin again.”

Each night this week we want to pause in gratitude.  Whatever the day has brought, no matter how busy it has been, we can stop, before we fall asleep, to give thanks for a little more light, a little more freedom to walk by that light, in joy.

Our celebration of the coming of our Savior in history, is opening us up to experience his coming to us this year, and preparing us to await his coming in Glory.

Come, Lord Jesus.  Come and visit your people. 
We await your coming.  Come, O Lord.


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