Advent calendar prayer and reflection for 5 December

The women of Fuerza Mujeres Wayuu

The movement Fuerza Mujeres Wayuu (Wayuu Women's Force) in Colombia has received six death threats this year alone. They make visible the deaths, displacements and disappearances of their families and the violation of women's rights. 

“Rain came down, floods rose, gales blew and hurled themselves against that house, and it did not fall: it was founded on rock.” 

Matthew 7:25

In today’s gospel we are told that if we listen to the Word of the Lord and live it out in our actions then we are the sensible ones. We will have built our house on the rock and will remain steadfast no matter what comes our way.

Yet we all know how difficult it can be to remain strong in our beliefs when we come under outside pressure.

It is not easy to maintain our position when we are buffeted by the rain and the wind of other people’s laughter, anger or disapproval.

So, what if we faced actual violence or danger as a result of standing up for what is right?

Last year, 164 people were killed around the world while trying to protect their land from destructive industries like logging and mining. Hundreds more were threatened or criminalised.

These people risk everything to defend our sisters and brothers and our common home. Brave individuals and communities speak up for land rights, the environment, peace and human rights.

This Advent may we be like those who built their house on the rock. Let us live out the gospel in our lives as we stand firm in what we know to be right and speak up about what we believe.

And let us reach out to those who face danger and persecution for doing the same, so that they know they are not alone as they strive to make the world a better place.

Advent prayer

Jesus, our Emmanuel – God-with-us,

as we listen to your Word,

lead us to stand alongside the brave women and men

who risk everything to protect the earth

and defend the most vulnerable among us.

Let us reach out in love so they may know they do not stand alone.

Amen.

Act

Show your support for those who defend the rights of others.

Send a Christmas message to the brave

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