Fourth Monday of Advent, 21 December 2020
In today’s reflection, Waiting in Joyful Hope author Michelle Francl-Donnay reflects on Luke 1:44, Pope Benedict XVI’s encyclical Deus Caritas Est, insight on joy from the frequently joyless novelist Léon Bloy, and joyful encounters.
In the comments section below, share your own response to today’s scripture, Francl-Donnay’s reflection, or the accompanying meditation prompt.
Being a biological mother, it is easy to recall how my son touched me within my womb. It truly was a unique experience to realize there was someone inside me whose movements were his own, completely out of my control. Expectation and anticipation are at their zenith. Joy is present, with the promise of even more to come. Today’s readings ignite those memories brightly. But what of all the humans who have/can never be pregnant? Do they miss out on this type of joy? Of course not. God just provides them with other means to experience the same end: the man lying prostrate at his ordination, the woman taking her final vows into an order, the author having written furiously learns the manuscript has been accepted, the newly graduated. The common thread is St. Ignatius’ gift of global community. Each of us gives birth to something greater than ourselves that ends up being shared by a wider world. “O radiant dawn, come and shine on those who dwell in darkness.” Each of us is pregnant with the Light of His face!
My husband, my niece and some of my friends. The knowledge that today, the winter solstice is the shortest day of the year and from now on the days will be longer. There is hope. We are getting close to celebrating Christmas the birth of Our Lord who loves us so much He became human to save us. That all my interactions with others today have been pleasant and caring and sometimes loving. This brings me joy today.