Day 18: Wednesday 16 December 2020

Welcome to Day 18 of our Advent Calendar! 

There are two attitudes typical of lukewarm Christians: putting God in a corner – either you do this for me or I won’t go to Church anymore – and washing our hands of those in need. Let us get rid of these attitudes to make space for the Lord who is coming. – Pope Francis 

Readings for Wednesday of the Third Week of Advent 

Is 45:6-8, 18, 21-26. Ps 84:9-14, R/ cf. Is 45:8. Lk 7:19-23

John the Baptist encourages his disciples to find the true Messiah. Our prayer is the ancient Rorate Coeli: send victory like the dew. 

www.catholicbishops.ie/readings

Advent Thought for the Day 

Each day during Advent we are bringing you an audio Thought for the Day on a different theme. Today’s Thought for the Day is from Niamh McCarthy of Trócaire who shares the story of this year’s Christmas gifts and how they are helping some of the most vulnerable people in the world. 

Click below to listen to the audio: 

The Words of Pope Francis 

Christ is alive! He is our hope, and in a wonderful way he brings youth to our world.  The very first words, then, that I would like to say to every young Christian are these: Christ is alive and he wants you to be alive!”.

Thus begins the post-synodal Apostolic Exhortation, Christus vivit (Christ is alive) by Pope Francis. Today’s excerpt is on the dangers of exploitation of young people: 

Our present-day culture exploits the image of the young. Beauty is associated with a youthful appearance, cosmetic treatments that hide the traces of time. Young bodies are constantly advertised as a means of selling products. The ideal of beauty is youth, but we need to realize that this has very little to do with young people. It only means that adults want to snatch youth for themselves, not that they respect, love and care for young people. (CV 79) 

#LivingAdvent 2020 #Sharing Hope 

 

During Advent we are sharing family prayers and suggestions for acts of kindness or charity that all of us are encouraged to undertake during the month of December.
 
Advent Random Act of Kindness 

Pope Francis offered a very wise piece of advice to couples which is particularly apt this third week of Advent as the stresses of preparing for Christmas come to the fore. He said: “It is so important to listen! Husbands and wives need to communicate to bring happiness and serenity to family life.”

So your act of kindness today is for couples: Check in on each other as husband and wife during these busy days. Take time to stop and share a moment together. Make each other a cuppa!  

Advent Act of Charity 

Support families in need this Christmas. Give what you can to local parish food banks. 

#SharingHope

We invite you to share our message of hope each day of Advent on your social media or website. Here is today’s message: 

Advent Prayers

Our Prayer Intentions for the Day to Pray Together is for Peace and we offer this prayer by Pope Francis

Prayer for Peace by Pope Francis 

peace
Lord God of peace, hear our prayer!
We have tried so many times and over so many years to
resolve our conflicts by our own powers and by the force
of our arms. How many moments of hostility and darkness
have we experienced; how much blood has been shed; how
many lives have been shattered; how many hopes have
been buried… But our efforts have been in vain.
Now, Lord, come to our aid! Grant us peace, teach us
peace; guide our steps in the way of peace. Open our eyes
and our hearts, and give us the courage to say: “Never
again war!”; “With war everything is lost”. Instil in our
hearts the courage to take concrete steps to achieve peace.
Lord, God of Abraham, God of the Prophets, God of Love,
you created us and you call us to live as brothers and
sisters. Give us the strength daily to be instruments of
peace; enable us to see everyone who crosses our path as
our brother or sister. Make us sensitive to the plea of our
citizens who entreat us to turn our weapons of war into
implements of peace, our trepidation into confident trust,
and our quarrelling into forgiveness.
Keep alive within us the flame of hope, so that with
patience and perseverance we may opt for dialogue and
reconciliation. In this way may peace triumph at last, and
may the words “division”, “hatred” and “war” be
banished from the heart of every man and woman. Lord,
defuse the violence of our tongues and our hands. Renew
our hearts and minds, so that the word which always
brings us together will be “brother”, and our way of life
will always be that of: Shalom, Peace, Salaam!
Amen.

emmanativity2004b

Advent Prayer Intentions 
1. May I follow you Lord
in your special love for all,
the most vulnerable
and disadvantaged,
with special concern for,
the hungry, the poor, the old, the sick, and those who have no family.

Source: The Family Prayer Book, Veritas

2. We pray for tolerance;
that divisions in families and in society may be broken down
so as all people can live in harmony.

sun in winter

Winter
Trees are bare,
Frost’s in the air.
Nothing seems to grow.
God’s love is there,
God still takes care
of the winter world I know.

Advent Music

It’s time for a piece from the Messiah. This is Ev’ry valley shall be exalted performed by the London Symphony Orchestra. Click here to watch/listen.

ENDS 

 

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