Advent Blues

The darkness closes in. Sadness, grief, loss, or some unspeakable sense of emptiness paralyzes. Each step feels like walking against the tide, pressing against of wall of nothingness. It seems easier to close the blinds. Turn over in bed. Lay in the dark. Days are shorter. Nights are longer. The whole planet has got the…

Advent – Collapse and Hope

  Collapse and Hope Rev. Doug Floyd Sun and moon turned dark. Stars falling from skies. Smoke and fire in the sky. Everything is quaking. Welcome to Advent…The beginning of the end of all things. Advent breaks into our world like a thunderclap or a meteor crashing down from the skies and reverberating across the…

Lessons & Carols

On Sunday, December 3, at 5 pm St. Brendan’s will join with Smoky Mountain Presbyterian Church, Pleasant Grove at College Street, Church of the Redeemer, and Vineyard Alcoa to kick off the Advent season. We’ll share singing carols and hear the reading of Scriptures that recount the great story of God’s redeeming action across the…

Advent Resources

Here are a few Advent meditations that have blessed me. One of the earliest books I read on Advent, was a selection of poems from Ann Weems. Her conversational poems speak to our human longing and struggle to pause before the mystery of God’s coming. Alfred Delp and Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s sermons were written from Nazi prisons and carry the weight of a soul waiting human judgment while looking for the coming of God in Christ. There are some paintings from across the ages that explore the nativity. One quick way to get started is by looking at Nativity on Wikiart (some pictures are not relevant but most are).

Advent Invitation

We stand at the threshold of a new year: a new cycle of remembrance and reflection. This coming Sunday marks the beginning of the Advent season and the beginning of the church year. For over 20 years, I’ve tried to write occasional meditations during this season of anticipation. For over 1500 years, the church has observed the Advent season as a time of watching and waiting for the coming of the Lord. Each year, I discover something new from this ancient well of church writings, music, art, and prayers.

As we watch and wait together, we learn afresh the meaning, the hope, the arrival of our Lord in all his glory. We learn from those saints who have gone before us, and we learn from one another as we journey together, share stories and watch for His sudden appearing. I invite you to walk with me and others in this season of watchful prayer. May we exhort one another all the more as we see the day approaching.

How do we practice Advent watching and waiting?

Great Quotes – Faith in the Midst of Darkness

To fear God and to obey the voice of the Servant would seem to imply having an abundance of light. But on reflection, that is not necessarily the case. Those who follow this Servant may indeed walk with him into the darkness of frustration, injustice, humiliation, and abuse. But this does not mean they should forgo their reliance on God. Through all…

Great Quotes – Love Must Be Revealed

“In the midst of the increasing violence, injustice, cruelty, and cold-heartedness of our time, love must be revealed: a love that towers above all earth’s mountains, that shines more purely and brightly than all the stars in the sky, that is mightier than all earthquakes and volcanic eruptions, that is greater than all world powers and rulers, that works more powerfully in…

Great Quotes – Culture and Knowing

“Culture consists in knowing, but it does not consist only in knowing; it consists even more in having known, and in the forgetting of a great many things because we know them too well and because they have passed down from memory into the very marrow of our bones.” – Donald and Idealla Gallagher on Jacques Maritain