Advent calendar and prayer for 17 December

Syria refugee teacher Lebanon peace

Halima, a Syrian refugee, teaches at a school in Lebanon. She longs for peace.

“May the mountains bring forth peace for the people and the hills, justice. May he defend the poor of the people and save the children of the needy.” 

Psalm 71:1-4, 7-8, 17 R Cf v 7

In Lebanese schools the lessons are in English and French, while most Syrian refugees speak Arabic. 

Gharsa school in Lebanon gives lessons to Syrian refugee children who either aren’t in school or who need extra help because of the language difference. 

Halima, a Syrian refugee herself, is a teacher at the school. She is proud of the work she does, bringing together children from different backgrounds. But she longs for peace. 

“I hope the war ends because we are tired from the war and we have lost everything. I hope all of us go back to Syria and stay with each other and there is integration with others and that we live in peace.”  

Gharsa means seed. One of the school’s mottos reads: “Learning is not only to know what happened but to create what will be in the future.”  

We pray that peace and justice may flourish throughout the world. Through God’s grace, may the next generation create a future of peace.

Advent prayer

God of mercy, pour out your peace on our troubled world and let your love and justice flow through us as we try to create a better future. Amen.  


Saint Oscar Romero stood by poor communities who were suffering from violence in El Salvador. You may like to order a Romero cross, hand-painted by our partners in El Salvador. A wonderful gift for Christmas stockings!

Order a Romero Cross

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