It’s getting awfully cold and dark, isn’t it? For some of us, cold and dark bring forth the deep grief of sickness, of loneliness, of endings, or of death. Why, then, is this the season where we begin the new liturgical year? Because we need the hope of new beginnings, especially now.
Whatever losses and hardships we have endured personally this year, in addition to these, 2017 has been quite a year!… Inaugurations, investigations, mass protests and counter-protests. Hurricanes, earthquakes and wildfires. Muslim travel bans, transgender rights rollbacks, open assault on the poorest and sickest people in America through cruel legislation. Two of the largest mass shootings our country has ever seen. White supremacists openly on parade, with torches, and without masks. Nuclear holocaust nightmares, redux.
Yet, It’s also been the year of: the largest single-day protest (the Women’s March on Jan 20). The annulment of much of that cruel legislation by an engaged electorate. The takedown of wealthy and powerful sexual predators, and the unmasking of sexual harassment and assault nationwide by women on the political left and the right. White people awakening to their privilege and showing up in greater numbers to protest white supremacy. And, soon, the seating of newly elected trans folks, women, and people of color in political office throughout the land.
This is the season of Advent… not just about the coming of baby Jesus in the manger, but the season of Apocalypse. Which means, not only the second coming of of the adult Jesus (look busy!) in judgment, but also, uncovering. It brings to mind the uncovering of the snow in the deep of winter, that with the sun’s love, in the spring, becomes the rose blossoming into the fullness of life. May it be so, in our lives, individually, and collectively.
I leave you with the hopeful words from Bette Midler’s beloved song, the Rose, https://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/bettemidler/therose.html