Fourth Sunday of Advent

December 22, 2013


Below you will find a short reflection for today, the Fourth Sunday of Advent. We encourage you to share this reflection by forwarding this email to others who you think might appreciate it.


Fourth Sunday of Advent


Isaiah 7:10-14 | Romans 1:1-7 | Matthew 1:18-25


By Jim Douglass


John's question - Are you the One? - remains with me when I visit Ameriyeh shelter in Baghdad.


Four young men lead us into the darkness of the Ameriyeh shelter. The candle held by the leader was our only light until we approached the center. There the huge gash in the ceiling revealed how the two bombs had entered at the target's bull's-eye, a ventilation duct. Light streamed into the darkness through the opening, illuminating beneath us a a bomb-sealed door to the second level of the shelter.


The incineration of 1700 people in the Ameriyeh shelter at 4:30am on February 13, 1991, had been done with an economy of war technology. Only two bombs to seal all the doors: the first blasting open the roof; the second serving to destroy the electrical system controlling the shelter's outer exit doors. Then the 2200-degree (Celsius) heat from the bombs quickly burned up the women, children, and older men of the 400 families allowed into the shelter. Only 30 victims survived, by escaping through an emergency exit in the rear. They bear terrible scars, physical and psychic... 


In Christ's peace,


Johnny Zokovitch

Director of Communications, Pax Christi USA

P.S. To see more Advent reflections from Pax Christi USA, click here.