Meditation – 1st December 2019

The Deep End – Lovingly Prepared
‘Making your Christmas cake in
September is perfect, as too fresh a
cake crumbles when cut.’ (Mary Berry)

My mother, like many of her generation, starts her Christmas
preparations early. The first thing to be done is the Christmas
cake – in our house this always took place over the Hallow’een
break. I remember finding it strange to watch her lovingly
prepare the fruit cake, only to hide it away in a tin for a couple
of months. I laughed when I came across the above quote from
food writer and TV presenter Mary Berry, as it pushes the
Christmas preparation even earlier!
Every year we hear complaints that the lead-in to
Christmas is starting earlier and earlier. We might not all be
making cakes in September, but by Hallowe’en we are certainly
looking ahead to Christmas – thinking about what gifts to buy
family and friends, checking out the decorations that have started to appear in the shops, perhaps even stockpiling biscuits and
boxes of chocolates. Many people sign up to Christmas clubs
in order to spread the cost over the year. It’s no wonder we
often arrive at this time of year feeling like it’s no time at all
since last Christmas – it is never far from our minds.
As we enter Advent, we are invited now to turn our
attention to our inner preparation for Christmas. We are
waiting in ‘joyful hope’ both for Christ’s birth and his return at
the end of time. Taking some time each day to pray and reflect,
perhaps to light the candles on our Advent wreath, will help us
to focus on the wonderful mysteries that await us.

‘Every year we celebrate the holy
season of Advent, O God. Every year
we pray those tbeautiful prayers of
longing and waiting, and sing those
lovely songs of hope and promise.’
(Karl Rahner)
Tríona Doherty