Advent 2015: Pray - Study - Act
In This Issue
PRAY: Reflection for Third Sunday of Advent
STUDY: Let's be peacefully united in our differences
ACT: Send messages of peace and hope to Bethlehem this Advent and Christmas
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Resources for the Third Week of Advent, Dec. 13-19
"If we want Advent to transform us -- our homes and hearts, and even nations -- then the great question for us is whether we will come out of the convulsions of our time with this determination: Yes, arise! It is time to awaken from sleep. A waking up must begin somewhere. It is time to put things back where God intended them. It is time for each of us to go to work -- certain that the Lord will come -- to set our life in God's order wherever we can. Where God's word is heard, God will not cheat us of the truth; where our life rebels, God will reprimand it." 

~ Alfred Delp, a German Jesuit executed by the Nazis

Bare trees

We hope that these Prayer-Study-Action (PSA) e-bulletins have been useful for you so far this Advent, and that they're helpful in cultivating a deeper immersion in the season. As always, you can find links to everything we send out or post on our Advent webpage.

In peace,

Johnny Zokovitch
Director of Communications, Pax Christi USA
 PRAY: Dec. 13, Third Sunday of Advent
By Jose Hobday, osfs

In the Southwest, where I grew up, certain places didn't serve Native Americans. One day my mother - who was a beautiful, full-blooded Indian with lovely, long, black hair - and I were shopping. We decided to take a break and go into a restaurant and get something to drink. We sat down in a booth, with a formica tabletop and nice green leather seats. I'll never forget that booth. I'll always remember the name of the restaurant, too, though I won't mention it here. Mom sat on one side of the booth, I on the other. She ordered a cup of coffee and I, a glass of milk.
   The waitress brought my milk, but she didn't bring my mother's coffee. Instead, she went over near the cash register and stood. I walked over to her and said, "You forgot my mother's coffee." She just looked at me, didn't say anything, but didn't bring the coffee either.
     We waited a bit. Then my mother said, "Jo, I think this is one of those places that won't serve Indian people. I don't think she's going to bring my coffee." I remember sitting there looking at my mother, thinking how beautiful she was and wondering how anyone could do this....

* If you have not ordered this year's Advent booklet and would still like to do so, you can click here to purchase and download this version for your e-reader.
STUDY: Let's be peacefully
united in our differences
by Pope Francis

The following is a speech given by Pope Francis in Nairobi during his visit to Africa. It was sent to us by Ron Pagnucco, coordinator of Pax Christi USA's Peace Studies listserv, who is currently in Kenya.

I am grateful for your presence this morning and for the opportunity to share these moments of reflection with you.
    In a particular way, I wish to thank Archbishop Wabukala and Prof El-Busaidy for their words of welcome offered on your behalf, and on behalf of their communities.
   It is always important to me that, when I come to visit the Catholic faithful of a local church, I have an occasion to meet the leaders of other Christian communities and religious traditions.
   It is my hope that our time together may be a sign of the church's esteem for the followers of all religions; may it strengthen the bonds of friendship which we already enjoy.
  To be honest, this relationship is challenging; it makes demands of us.
     Yet ecumenical and inter-religious dialogue is not a luxury.
     It is not something extra or optional, but essential, something which our world, wounded by conflict and division, increasingly needs...

ACT: During Advent and Christmas, send messages of peace and hope to Bethlehem
from Pax Christi International

In May 2015, Pax Christi had the great honor to celebrate our 70th anniversary in Bethlehem; our World Assembly was hosted by our friends and colleagues with the Arab Educational Institute (AEI), a Pax Christi International member organization based in Palestine. During our time on the West Bank, we visited many sites, met with committed Palestinian and Israeli peacemakers, and prayed along the separation wall.
 During Advent and Christmas 2015, Pax Christi International members and people of good will are invited to write a message of hope and encouragement to our friends in Bethlehem. AEI will distribute them to citizens of Bethlehem, members and friends.
    Please e-mail your Christmas peace prayers & wishes before 25 December 2015 (Western Christmas) and/or 7 January 2016 (Eastern Christmas). While English is the preferred language, non-native English speakers may use their mother tongue. 
    Send your emails to [email protected]Messages will be posted on the AEI website.