Ban reindeer, if you like. Abolish Santa Claus and Christmas trees. Keep your family wrapped in the starkest of Advent penances. Eradicate eggnog and candy, tinsel and presents, snowflakes and stockings. Exterminate the festival of it all, the nonsense of the season, if you must. Lord knows, you have cause. Christmas has become, in the United States, the holiday — which is to say, the holy day — that dare not speak its name. We Continue Reading →
If you view Advent as a time of purification, of evacuating the self to make room for Christ in you at Christmas, it will appear as “a little Lent.” It would be likening Advent to the state of a desert, which is precisely the meaning of Lent as a desert experience. But Advent has a different and bigger meaning. Advent is salvation history itself writ small. Its proper understanding demands refocusing on the meaning of Continue Reading →
A Christmas letter that Pope Benedict XVI wrote to Baby Jesus when he was seven years-old demonstrates his devotion to the Sacred Heart and his desire to be a priest.The letter is on display this Advent in the village of Marktl am Inn in Bavaria, where he was born. Read more . . .
In Advent, time of expectation, it is interesting to read an almost unknown homily of Pope Paul VI, found only in Italian on the Vatican website. It was preached at a Roman parish on Passion Sunday, April 4, 1965. Excerpts follow: Read more . . .
The Gospel from Monday the second week of Advent is the gospel of the paralyzed man who is lowered through the roof. It is presented to us in Advent because, among the many prophecies about the Messiah, would be that the lame would walk. But the Gospel also helps us to focus on Jesus’ central mission for us, and it is very provocatively expressed in this Gospel. The Gospel passage contains a rather peculiar and Continue Reading →
Editor’s Note: Each year around Christmastime we post a slightly updated version of the following personal Christmas reflection which offers an alternate custom to the celebration of the great Feast. I wrote it some years ago, and every year since I receive email from new visitors to this site gently chastising The Remnant for not posting it earlier in Advent so as to allow time for families to adopt as their own some of the Continue Reading →