First Sunday of Advent
“In those days, in that time, I will raise up for David a just shoot; he shall do what is right and just in the land. In those days Judah shall be safe and Jerusalem shall dwell secure; this is what they shall call her: “The Lord our justice.”
Jeremiah’s words carry power. They herald the good news of a tiny, just shoot. The tiny, green shoot appears very small and vulnerable amidst the brown, chaos filled soil of those times. Yet the tiny shoot brings justice. Justice is the first message we hear in Advent.
Pope Francis, in his encyclical letter Laudato Si’, also speaks with power as he reflects on the signs of our times and the message of justice.
“In the present condition of global society, where injustices abound and growing numbers of people are deprived of basic human rights and considered expendable, the principle of the common good immediately becomes, logically and inevitably, a summons to solidarity and a preferential option for the poorest of our brothers and sisters.”
As we watch the news and pay attention to the “signs of our times”, we clearly know who are the poorest. Refugees have nothing and seek the shoot of justice. We must choose justice at it emerges in our current soil of divisiveness. I must respond and choose justice over intolerance, bigotry and fear.
I have a lot to think and pray about this Advent. I must both choose and speak justice amidst the troubling signs of our times.
Terry McDevitt, Ph.D. is a member of the Passionist Family in Louisville, Kentucky.