December 2018 edition of Faith Journey. Email not displaying correctly?
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Welcome to our next edition of Faith Journey.


The Christmas story is all about journeys. The journey of Mary and Joseph to Bethlehem. The journey of the shepherds from the fields to the stable. The journey of the wise men from the East. The journey of the Holy Family as they flee from Herod into Egypt. Their journey back to Nazareth once the coast is clear. These are the obvious journeys associated with these stories. There are others.
For a start, there’s the journey the celebration has taken from Jesus’ likely date of birth (probably sometime in September) to its current date of 25 December. Explanations vary widely as to why this has happened. Of course, the moving around of a birthday has precedents in our experience. Queen Elizabeth II was not born on the second weekend of June, any more than Jesus was on 25 December. But the latter will do as a date to celebrate in the absence of any other certain date. Those of us who have been part of ‘Christmas in July’ festivities know that, for the southern hemisphere at least, the feast has the potential to be once more on the move…

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Have you looked for a car park recently? There are none. Everyone is at the shops.
This annual shopping frustration puts an ironic layer upon Advent, the liturgical season of waiting.
During the four weeks prior to Christmas, we light the candles of our Advent wreaths and put ourselves in the spiritual space of the Israelites who, through many long centuries, waited for the coming of the Messiah, “How long, O Lord?”
Take advantage of the traffic and the shopping lines—really anything that makes you wait. And let the truth of what 18th-century French priest Jean-Pierre de Caussade said sink in: "God's activity runs through the entire universe. It wells up around and penetrates every created being… accept cheerfully all the difficulties you meet, and surrender to the will of God in all you have to do…. 

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Have a happy and blessed Christmas.


Shane Dywer, Director of the National Centre for Evangelisation
Shane Dwyer
National Centre for Evangelisation
1300 432 484
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