Dear Sacred Heart Families,
Advent is here! Christ is coming! This is a season that always brings me great joy. Our savior is about to be born! Psalm 150: 6 reads “Let everything that has breath give praise to the Lord! Hallelujah!” This is actually the final verse of the psalms and while the psalms contain both joy and lamentation, this line probably is the capstone of why the psalms exist, why they are part of sacred scripture. This verse could be a capstone for our Advent season as well.
Of course, our experience of Advent in our modern world usually doesn’t fit this joyful picture I am painting all that well, or even at all. We live in a hyper-fast, materialistic, consumerist society and its pace only picks up in this season. The pace of life only picks up too. We have friends and family to see, more baking to do, more chores to fit it; you name it, and the list goes on. These things are good things, but trying to do everything in a short window of time can drain all of us and make each of us forget psalm 150 and the truth of this season.
Ironically, it takes hard work, deliberate work, and intentional choice for us to slow down and absorb God’s greater influence and joy in this season. We have to choose to pause and step out of the pace our world calls for, however briefly, and we are called to do so not only with ourselves, but with our families. This is a difficult, but immensely rewarding decision to make. This is the perfect tie in for our world at school. Teaching and learning are both tasks that define hard work, require great energy, and often involve a fast pace. Yet it is necessary for us to take a step back as educators and reflect on how well we are connecting with our students. This is an act of slowing down. Our teachers have taken time to do so this year by reading Teach Like a Champion and in their personal practice, and this time has required effort and patience. I applaud them in that effort.
Our families, know that I am praying for you and that I applaud any effort you take to encounter the joy of this season. Together, our modeling for our children will show them the path to live a meaningful, deeply fulfilled life centered on love and joy. I ask that God will give you the space, maybe for a few nights, maybe just for one, even for just an hour, somewhere in this season to step out of the pace our world calls for, to be present with Him and your family, and to truly know His joy in that moment. Amen!
Sacred Heart School is a co-educational Catholic parish school dedicated to academic excellence, faith formation and service to others. We are a faith community committed to teaching the word of God and to giving witness to the message of Jesus Christ.