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Advent’s Gift of Silence and Stillness … Open It and Receive

Advent’s Gift of Silence and Stillness … Open It and Receive

Today’s post is the second in a four-part Advent series. To read the first post in the series, click HERE. *** I open my planner and see all of the “to-dos” on my list, many more than usual. Each task, in and of itself, is a delightful privilege to do for my family. As a mom, I know I am instrumental in making the magic of Christmas come alive in our home. What an honor! The joy on my kids’ faces,…

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Waiting and Watching With Mary This Advent

Waiting and Watching With Mary This Advent

This article was originally published on the WINE: Women In the New Evangelization blog, as a reflection on the readings for the first Sunday of Advent. Since that was just a few days ago, I thought I would share it here, too, as part of the #WorthRevisit series. Seven years ago, I had the beautiful privilege of being pregnant during the Advent season. I was anticipating a Christmas baby, so I couldn’t help but think a lot about the Blessed…

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Jesus Invites the Weary to Find Rest in Him This Advent

Jesus Invites the Weary to Find Rest in Him This Advent

This summer, I attended a three-day silent retreat. I entered into the retreat with an agenda! I anticipated receiving very clear direction for the next phase of my life as a wife and mom. You see, my family was about to begin a new school year, and it was going to be the first time in 14 years that all six of my children would be in school. I was going to be a stay-at-home mom with no kids at home, and I…

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Be Still: A Free Advent Prayer Journal for the Weary Woman

Be Still: A Free Advent Prayer Journal for the Weary Woman

It is midway through this week of limbo. This week that feels like I am on hold. Thanksgiving is over, but Advent hasn’t begun. I wanted this week to be a time to prayerfully consider how I wanted to enter into the four weeks of Advent. But like so often it does, life hijacked that prayerful plan. Some of it was out of my control, like my husband coming down with the flu. But other things were definitely in my control,…

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Advent Book Giveaway Prepares Families for Christmas

Advent Book Giveaway Prepares Families for Christmas

It’s Black Friday. I am sitting at my computer perusing all of the sales and deals that have appeared in my inbox. I am not one to venture out on this busy day, but I am getting excited to begin the season of Advent and prepare for Christmas. Advent doesn’t begin for over a week, though. Normally, this is the weekend I unpack our Advent wreath, take out our Jesse Tree ornaments, and decorate the house with a few hints…

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Advent Traditions My Family Loves

Advent Traditions My Family Loves

With Thanksgiving just two days away, there is a lot to do. My plans include cooking, baking, and cleaning. I have always liked the Thanksgiving holiday. To be with family and friends, to pause in gratitude for God’s abundant blessings. It’s a good day. Often, the Advent season begins the Sunday right after Thanksgiving. We have just a couple of days to transition from pumpkins and fall hues to our Advent wreath of purple and pink. This year, however, Advent…

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On the Last Day of Christmas: Embracing the Babe, Embracing the Cross

On the Last Day of Christmas: Embracing the Babe, Embracing the Cross

As we close out the Christmas season today with the Feast of the Baptism of Our Lord, I remember starting my weekly Holy Hour during the first week of Advent. As I sat in the quiet chapel, I was struck by the placement of the nativity scene under the true Presence of the Blessed Sacrament on the altar and Christ Crucified above. This infant Jesus, who the shepherds knelt before in adoration and praise. This newborn babe, who the magi traveled to find, to…

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Joy to the World! The Lord is Come!

Joy to the World! The Lord is Come!

I just love Christmas Eve. Attending Mass this evening is my favorite part of Christmas. I become overwhelmed with joy, as O Come All Ye Faithful announces the beginning of this holy day, this holy season. I cannot help but put myself—and all those weary travelers who are with me in Church—right in the Nativity scene. It is as if we are following the star of wonder … we are like the shepherds going to see the Baby in the stable … I…

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Rejoice! God is Giving Us Christmas!

Rejoice! God is Giving Us Christmas!

This reflection is the fourth in a four-part series that supplements the free Advent prayer journal I am offering to email subscribers. You may read part one HERE, part two HERE, and part three HERE. *** One more week, and we will be celebrating the birth of Jesus. Ready or not, Christmas is coming. This Advent, we may have started out a bit weary, a bit sorrowful, a bit worn out. We heard Jesus’ invitation to come to Him for rest, and we rested in His…

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Celebrating the Feast of St. Lucia

Celebrating the Feast of St. Lucia

For as long as I can remember, December 13 has been an extra-special day in our family. It is the Feast of St. Lucia, which is my daughter’s name-day. She has loved this day and the saint we celebrate ever since she could grasp its specialness. We have cinnamon rolls for breakfast and read a favorite book about St. Lucy. Since her birthday is in the summer, she usually brings treats into school on this day. But six years ago, a…

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