The Catholic Church encourages us to observe Advent as a time of waiting, conversion and hope.
Modern culture makes it relatively easy for us to miss the Advent season and skip right to the celebration of Christmas. Unfortunately, this can rob us of the beauty of Advent and its special spiritual character.
The Vatican’s Directory on popular piety and the liturgy provides for us three simple words that should guide us during Advent, and transform our observance into a special time of preparation.
Waiting – memory of the first, humble coming of the Lord in our mortal flesh; waiting-supplication for his final, glorious coming as Lord of History and universal Judge.
Conversion, to which the Liturgy at this time often refers quoting the prophets, especially John the Baptist, “Repent for the kingdom of heaven is at hand” (Mt 3:2).
Joyful hope that the salvation already accomplished by Christ (cf. Rm 8, 24-25) and the reality of grace in the world, will mature and reach their fulness, thereby granting us what is promised by faith, and “we shall become like him for we shall see him as he really is” (John 3:2).
If you are looking to deepen your Advent season, keep these three words in the back of your mind, letting them guide your preparations for the glorious celebration of Christmas.