An Invitation to See the World Differently

Suzanne Cooke, RSCJ
Advent begins this Sunday. It enjoys a two-fold character. We prepare for Christmas when Christ’s first coming to us is remembered and we prepare our minds and hearts for His Second Coming. Thus, the spirit of Advent is the spirit of preparation.
I have always valued Walter Brueggemann’s insight that "Advent is an invitation…"
... to see the world differently. … It is an assertion that all our
present stands under judgment. It is a time for reflection and self-assessment.
We are invited to “watch and pray”, to watch for signs of God’s new reign, which
are elusive, and to pray, i.e., to submit to the dangerous newness.
Surely, we live at a moment that compels us to see the world differently. We need to take the time to be still. How else might we experience the presence of God through one another and the grace-filled events in our daily lives? How else might we tap into hope?
How best to live these weeks that are meant to be a preparation focused on Christ but are usually lived at an crazed pace as we race towards December 25th. What attitudes of heart might best support our desire to be still, to listen and to imagine the world differently?

Mother Stuart urged us to be alert, expectant, diligent, quiet and patient during these weeks. Her advice remains sage because these attitudes of heart enable us to be wakeful, vigilant, standing on a height to watch, and sense the Spirit in our midst. In this stillness, Mother Stuart would encourage us to be spiritually attentive and keen so that we can be watchful for the low words and gentle touches of grace. This perspective supports us in our desire to see the world different.
Schools of the Sacred Heart share in the educational mission of the Society of the Sacred Heart as articulated in the Goals and Criteria. The structure supporting Sacred Heart education in Canada and the United States includes the Conference of Sacred Heart Education and the Network of Sacred Heart Schools.  Together they provide services and programs to ensure vitality of mission for the member schools sponsored by the Society of the Sacred Heart.