As we head into the Advent season, the Marquette community is encouraged to pause and reflect on our Catholic, Jesuit identity and how each of us can continue to be men and women for others during the celebration of Christmas. Each week, Campus Ministry will offer an Advent reflection, providing an opportunity for us to open our hearts and minds to the spirit of Advent.
The Spaces of Advent
By Megan Sheehan, communications coordinator for Campus Ministry
We see the empty manger with the hope in it being filled. We see the empty tomb with the hope in our salvation. Advent comes from the Latin word adventus, meaning “coming.” Christ is coming to us – how do we make room? As we begin the season of Advent, let us consider the space into which God enters the world. Thomas Merton’s words carry a particular weight when he said, “Into this world – this demented inn in which there is absolutely no room for him at all – Christ comes uninvited.” In a world where lack of love, injustice and pain makes headlines on an hourly basis, we wonder how Christ’s love might be received. What kind of spaces might we find if we take a step back to consider the kind of room we are leaving for this relentless, loving Jesus? What spaces in our hearts need to be converted? What must we do to prepare a space for Christ’s coming?
It is a gift that Christ’s coming is persistent, arriving without invitation. Indeed, the grace of Christ’s coming is an invitation to us to participate in a love that is beyond what this world alone offers. As Christ beckons us with His pending birth, how can we participate in the wait? To actively wait means to take stock of how we are entering Advent, and to share that with Christ. To actively wait means to make space in our own hearts and lives for the love of Christ, for life, for hope. Let us have the courage to seek to make room, so that our entire lives are an Advent of actively waiting in joyful hope for the coming of our Savior.
An Advent Reconciliation Service will be held on Tuesday, Dec. 4, at 7:15 p.m. at the Church of the Gesu. Join the community in this meaningful way to reflect on the semester and prepare for the coming of the celebration of Christ’s birth.