Making room this Advent season | GUEST OP

  • Friday, December 8, 2017 10:11am
  • Opinion

By the Rev. Dr. Joyce Parry Moore, rector, St. James Episcopal, Kent

During that week after Thanksgiving, our family engages in something I call “making room:” clearing away the leaves and pumpkins to make room for evergreen boughs and candles; clearing away ceramic turkeys and platters and making room for packages and crafts.

Perhaps your family had also been busy that week, making room for a tree, a menorah, for presents and decorations that fit your holiday traditions. But how do we make room in our lives and in our hearts? And for what are we preparing?

On these dark and damp days I’m especially aware of my longing for light and how this season – which, in my Christian, Episcopal tradition, we call Advent – calls our attention to making room for that light, to shine in all the cobwebby corners of our lives. There are not enough presents, decorations and cartoons (well, maybe cartoons) in the world to overcome our darkness, to fill that space with meaning.

And so, it is tempting to, as they say, “cut to the chase,” declaring Merry Christmas or happy holidays as soon as Santa makes his way down 5th Avenue. Yet, there is something lovely about waiting, about making room.

One of my favorite Winnie the Pooh quotes expresses this anticipation — “Well,” said Pooh, “what I like best,” and then he had to stop and think. Although eating honey was a very good thing to do, there was a moment just before you began to eat it, which was better than when you were, but he didn’t know what it was called. That blessed moment is a time of reflection, of gratitude, of going deeper. And here at St. James, we are making room for that this season.

I invite you, my broad community, to join us at 6 on Wednesday nights – Dec. 13, 20. We’ll start with a simple potluck (if you don’t have a dish, come anyway), and then engage in activities for that moment: chanting, walking an indoor labyrinth, making prayer beads, yoga and meditation.

Together we will wait and make room in our hearts for the light that is coming. In a world of insatiable appetite and non-stop pace, give yourself the counter-cultural gift of peace.

For more information, follow this link to the St. James website.

More in Opinion

Will Trump trip help GOP’s congressional races?

Expect mega money to be spent on campaigns in the next three months

American giving surpassed $400 billion | Brunell

Philanthropy is what we continue to do well

Tribes support sea lion removal legislation

Federal legislation allowing lethal removal of more sea lions in the lower… Continue reading

Blue wave crashes through Republican lines drawn in primary showdown

Democratic challengers leading in nearly a dozen legislative districts across the state

KCLS expanding its role as a community partner

With summer in full swing, it seems an excellent time to celebrate… Continue reading

All can consider, what would a great leader do? | Elfers

The time was 460 B.C. The place, across the Tiber River from… Continue reading

Does Washington need a ‘surgeon general’s warning’ for guns?

Initiative 1639 would require something similar on paperwork for firearms purchases.

GE’s Tumble from Grace | Brunell

Last month, General Electric lost its place among our nation’s top 30… Continue reading

Sweetest revenge? Sometimes it’s just being nice | Elfers

We need to be (re)taught how to be kind to others

Mental health competency delays are costing state millions

The state is paying millions of dollars a year in sanctions because… Continue reading

Jetsons cartoon robots now reality

The Jetsons television series about a space-age family featuring “Rosey the Robot”… Continue reading