Advent: We Walk in Hope

– Br. Michael, ofm

As Advent 2020 begins we may scoff at the idea of walking in hope. This has been a trying and difficult year and we do not have a sense of how Christmas will unfold or how the new year will begin. It is easy to lose sight of hope in the midst of this pandemic. Yet as followers of Jesus Christ hope is part of our DNA, it is written in fine print on our calling cards, it is the assurance that our God is with us – always, no matter what or when.

As we begin this short and sacred season, let us turn our attention to this hope. As we prepare our homes and our hearts during this season, let us seek hope in each day. The psalm for the First Sunday of Advent is Psalm 80 and it declares “Restore us, O God; let your face shine that we may be saved.” This is the gift of hope which is ours. It is the restoring hope of our God with us amid the tiredness of this year, the tasks at hand, the desire for specials moments in the season, the lifting up of a prayer and the reaching out to those struggling or hurting. It is the awareness that hope is not selfish, rather it calls us into relationship with God and others.

As this Advent begins and we long for the joy of Christmas to fill us, especially this year, let us linger in the hope of this season found in the message of an angel, in the carols we sing, in the quiet moments of prayer (even if only for two minutes while washing our hands again) and in the invitation to “Keep Alert. Keep Awake” (Matthew 13.33-37). Let us keep alert and keep awake for hope has away to sneak in to speak new truths and restore us, so that we too may shine like the face of God.

Week One of Advent is often called the Week of Hope, may this first week of the New Year (Liturgical) inspire you to set new goals, resolutions and restore your hope. Where do you need to incorporate Hope as we begin this New Year? The journey may feel long but it is always worth it.


In this season

we welcome sacred darkness

we also welcome patient light.


In this season

we prepare our heart and our home

and yet we are called to wait.


In this season

ancient carols and traditions find their place

inviting us into birthing newness.

In this season

our imagination is stirred

so are our prayers.

In this season

the rushing about here and there can hinder us

yet the gift of stillness always offers invitation.

In this season

we place our hope in the steadfast love of our God

who has come to us, is with us and will come again.

In this season

we are called to stand in awe and wonder

do we allow ourselves this gift?

Welcome Sister Advent!

Awaken us to your true gifts

as we walk in hope!

Artwork: Claire Ziprick