Hospitality of the Heart ~ Advent 2014
This love must then spread to your whole community, even to the whole world, precisely through you, dear children. Love will then be able to reach those who are most in need of it, especially the suffering and the abandoned.
What joy is greater than the joy brought by love? What joy is greater than the joy which you, O Jesus, bring at Christmas to people’s hearts, and especially to the hearts of children?
Raise your tiny hand, Divine Child, and bless these young friends of yours, bless the children of all the earth.
+John-Paul P.P. II, Christmas 1994
Who knew our December meetings would bring so much conversation about the most appropriate and proper way to celebrate Advent. Our MARCH group meets twice a month and as December approached we sent out the meeting dates and topics. Actually, we opted for no clear topics for the month of December, knowing full well that we all had our hands full with Advent and Christmas preparations. We opted to have a Christmas party. It wasn’t going to be a party with Santa Claus, games, and gifts. Our intention was a get-together to encourage one another as we headed into Christmas. Well, the word ‘party’ did not sit well with some of our families. After much discussion about proper activities during advent we decided on two things. A peaceful lighthearted luncheon at the Smith family home for early December, a Cookies and Cocoa gathering for later in the month and our annual Sweet Dreams service project for the homeless shelter.
The Cookies and Cocoa gathering was filled with song, stories, and of course lots of holiday treats to eat. The children ended with an ol’ fashion snowball fight at the end of the night.
This year the homeless shelter ask us to include a few specific items for some of their residents with special needs. These requests made us feel more connected to those we were helping, it truly is better to give than to receive.
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