Joy: Shepherd's Candle

Advent Activities for the week of December 17th

As the earth brings forth its plants, and a garden makes its growth spring up, so will the Lord GOD make justice and praise spring up before all the nations.
IS 61:1-2A, 10-11

Prayer for lighting the candle  

Now, Lord! When are you waiting? Now!
Come quickly, come, for the world is spinning blindly
ignoring the love that sustains it.
Come quickly, come, Lord, for today between siblings traps are laid and snares are hidden.
Come, come, that freedom is behind bars
of the fear that one professes to the other.
Come, come, come, do not cease now to listen to us
when so many roads are closed
Now, Lord! When will you wait? Now!
Will you not be the joy of the poor,
Of those who put their trust in you?
Will you not be for the sorrowful and afflicted
comfort in their sorrow, light in their cry?
Who will put peace in our hearts
if your tenderness and compassion are hidden?
Who will fill this hunger for the infinite
if you do not come to satisfy it yourself?
Now, Lord! When will you wait? Now.

Adaptation of Psalm 70


In JRS we work every day to bring the good news of love, peace and hope to all people who have been forced to leave their homes. We want to share that joy by accompanying, serving, and advocating for our siblings so that they may heal, learn, and determine their own future. 

We encourage you to learn more about three JRS projects that exemplify good news.  

  1. Education in West Africa
  2. Rita, first to access JRS/USA MHPSS at the U.S. – Mexico Border
  3. Connectors of Peace in India 

I reflect on all the good news that is revealed in my life and how I have been able to learn and determine my own future during this last year.  And, out of gratitude, how I too feel called to share that joy.  

Action of JOY  

On this ‘Gaudete Sunday’ we rejoice as witnesses to the joyful anticipation of the shepherds who journeyed to see Jesus in Bethlehem, even before the wise men.  

We, like the shepherds and the Three Wise Men, are preparing the table, the food and the presents to offer as a celebration of the birth of the child Jesus.  

As we prepare ourselves for the festivities consider sharing that joy and present it to baby Jesus by organizing a food drive, donating some of your clothes or donating to one of our projects.