“Behold, the people living in darkness have seen a great light . . .” – Isaiah 9

Psalm 80:1-19Isaiah 64:1-9I Corinthians 1:3-9Mark 13:24-37

Advent begins this Saturday. It is the season of waiting, the season of anticipation, it is the season of longing, for an apocalypse. 
We make a big deal out of the fact that the Christmas Season, while in full swing on the radio and at Wal-Mart, has not yet begun. So maybe, as you find yourself humming along to your favorite Christmas song you can add some Advent flavor to them.  Such as:
 “I’ll be in exile for Christmas”
 “Have yourself a Merry little apocalypse” (HT-Jason Micheli),
or … we could go for the traditional Advent songs, such as:
 “O Come, O Come, Emmanuel”
 “Come Thou Long Expected Jesus”
These last two, traditional Advent hymns, should be no less shocking, no less apocalyptic to those of us whose ears are attuned to the rhythm of the Church year. Advent teaches us to long for Christ’s birth and Christ’s second coming. Both of which are truly apocalyptic in the truest sense of the word.
Almighty God, give us grace to cast away the works of darkness, and put on the armor of light, now in the time of this mortal life in which your Son Jesus Christ came to visit us in great humility; that in the last day, when he shall come again in his glorious majesty to judge both the living and the dead, we may rise to the life immortal; through him who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.