Advent

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On Sunday December 2nd we begin the Season of Advent, and the start of a new year in the life and liturgy of the Church. Why not let it be the start of something new and fresh for you - not just to come to church, but to be the Church.

There are many already existing ways and activities we can become involved in - singers and musicians, flower arrangers and church cleaners, altar servers and ministers of communion, catechists and readers, as well as the various social, prayer and support groups which gather weekly in our parish. To join them, just approach someone who you can see is already active in that group or ministry, or Father Tony or Deacon Mike, and tell them you'd like to become involved too.

But what if there's something that interests you (such as justice and social action, a specific support or friendship group, adoration prayer, church gardening or DIY around the church) which isn't already happening? Then YOU make it happen! The chances are that so long as it's compatible with the Gospel (and legal!) we'll provide all the support and resources you need to make it begin to happen.

This Advent, let's cause some seeds of new life to grow in Holy Family Parish.


PRAYER INTENTIONS DURING ADVENT

Throughout the course of the year, the Church recommends particular intentions for us to remember in prayer. During the Season of Advent these are:

For Migrants and those forced to flee in fear of their lives from their home due to war or persecution (especially on World Migrants Day, Monday the 3rd of December); For a greater openness among Christians to the Word of God (especially on Bible Sunday, the Second Sunday of Advent, the 9th of December); For Expectant Parents (especially on the Fourth Sunday of Advent, the 23rd of December)


THE LITURGY OF ADVENT

Advent has a two-fold character, and this is reflected in the two stages of Advent, each with its own special "mood". From the First Sunday of Advent until the 16th of December, the liturgy expresses the eschatological expectation of Advent, the watchfulness of God's people looking forward to the time when Christ will come again "in glory and majesty," and "the salvation promised us will be ours." From the 17th of December until Christmas Eve, the liturgy prepares us more directly to celebrate the Lord's birth, "our hearts filled with wonder and praise."

The Christian community lives in an "interim" time between two historical events: the coming of Christ in the flesh and his coming in glory at the end of time. The Church is called to be strong in faith "as we wait in joyful hope for the coming of our Saviour, Jesus Christ."