The season of Advent evokes in Christians a time of hope, of peace and of repentance. Our hope is based on the risen, living Christ who has already ‘won the victory’, and so much wants to share that with us through his Spirit. Advent reminds us that Christ wants to come into our lives, come close. And as we prepare for Christmas, we recall that he is the prince of peace. How much the world needs his peace!

What a wonderful call: to share Christ’s mission of making peace! Now more than ever. But before we get carried away, the Church wisely calls each of us to repentance: ‘It is the hour for you to wake up from sleep…Let us throw off the works of darkness.’ With God’s help, pick one area to ‘throw off’ this Advent, to become a peace-maker, to be hope-filled once again!

—Mark Henninger, S.J. serves as a Pastoral Care chaplain at Loyola University Medical Center, Maywood IL.