Staff Editorial: The advent adventure

Emily+Hirshorn+%2715

Emily Hirshorn ’15

Before Christmas comes, it seems like we need to get many things ready. We need to get a tree, adorn it with ornaments, add lights to the house, bake Christmas cookies, buy presents, shop for Christmas dinner and build gingerbread houses. The list goes on, and definitely needs to be checked more than twice. When Christmas finally does roll around, our house may be ready and our presents may be ready, but are we ready?

Emily Hirshorn '15
Emily Hirshorn ’15

I admit that it is easy to see the Advent season as a yearly hurdle to get over in order to reach Christmas. Each weekly-lit candle on the Advent wreath reminds us of how close we are to Christmas. Four candles left, three candles, two candles, one candle. Christmas.
But Advent is not just a countdown. It is four weeks of preparing ourselves for Christmas. Because, ultimately, what matters most is not whether our trees are perfectly decorated for the big day. What Jesus cares most about is if our hearts are ready for His coming.
This Advent season, I encourage us all to really use these next four weeks to prepare our hearts for Christmas. We can treat Advent not as an obstacle, but as an adventure. Because, good things always come to those who wait. And not just those who wait, but those who take this time to actively and hopefully anticipate Jesus’ coming.
If I were to sum up the Advent season in four words, I would say it is a time of preparing hearts for Christ. How can we do that? Well, for the Catholic members of our community, we can make the effort to go to mass every week and not just mass on Christmas. We can even try to get to confession once or twice.
Catholic or not, all of us Christians can find ways to prepare our hearts in some way. Perhaps by doing random acts of kindness for people in our Sacred Heart community or by helping around the house and spending more time with our family members. We can even take advantage of the numerous community service opportunities in school and out of school. And, we can consciously appreciate every day the Advent season gives us.
If we truly recognize the Advent season as a time of prayerful preparation, Christmas will be an even more joyful occasion. Because, this year, maybe, just maybe, our hearts will be ready too.
– Emily Hirshorn, Opinions Editor