Advent calendar reflection for 7 December

3 figures outside house.

Sonia, Nomita and Bissajit outside their home.

“'Console my people, console them,’ says your God.”  

Isaiah 40:1

These beautiful words from the prophet Isaiah in today’s reading offer great comfort - our God wants to console us. God wants to be with us, even in our frustrations and our failures. Like a shepherd, he will guide us and care for us in all the circumstances of our lives. 

“‘Console my people, console them’ says your God.”  

These are also words of challenge. We hear these words spoken to each of us today. How can we be people who bring consolation to those suffering loss, disappointment, or crisis? 

Nomita first heard of her husband’s death when the community leader from her village in Bangladesh came to tell her that he had been hit by lightning while at the marketplace.  

She describes her grief, recalling that “For a year I didn’t eat normally. I didn’t sleep properly. I couldn’t think normally. There were times when I thought I might die too.” 

Nomita’s parents and brother-in-law came to her aid, helping her to care for her children in that difficult time. 

“‘Console my people, console them,’ says your God.” 

When disaster strikes or times are hard for our global family, we too are invited to share in God’s work of consolation, to provide comfort to his people. This Advent, let’s look for opportunities to comfort and support those in need, wherever they are in the world. 

Advent prayer

God of consolation,
in this season of Advent, prepare our hearts
so that we may offer consolation to those in need.
Work through us so that your love may be shown
in our efforts to bring comfort to others.
Amen.

Act

Keep those in need of consolation in your prayers. Perhaps remember them at your parish or group Advent carol service. 

Many of us really missed singing our favourite carols last year, it would be wonderful to meet and sing (indoors or out, depending on current guidelines). You may want to use our song sheets and guide

There is also a challenge to make a video of yourselves singing Silent Night or another carol and share it online, using the hashtag #CAFODcarols so we can find you!    

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