Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Come, Lord Jesus!

         When I taught 8th grade in one of our parish schools years ago, I spent some time developing the idea of Advent with my students. One  particular year brought it home to them in a way I certainly never expected.
          I tell the students that the word comes from the Latin “ad” meaning “to” or “toward”, and “venturus”, meaning “the coming”, future tense.
          So we celebrate by remembering the first coming of Jesus on Christmas day, and hearing much in the scriptures about his second coming at the end of time. And of course, the children are always aware that “Santa Claus is Coming to Town.”      So many comings!
But, in between there are other comings of Jesus, in our daily lives, in the persons we encounter, and events of the day. And - Jesus tells us, “Be ready, for you do not know the day or the hour.”
I would tell the children about my little 9 year old brother Billy who was dying during Advent of the year I was a sophomore in high school. On Dec. 8 I had spent the day with him in the hospital, talking, playing games with him and just being there. He came back home for Christmas. But, On Dec. 29, Jesus came for him, as we gathered around his bed, waiting. I’ll never forget how his eyes opened wide during the coma, focusing on Someone or Something bright in the corner of the room. And then he was gone. It was so awesome! I’ll never forget.
The students are always very quiet when I talk about this.
Well, after a few days, they went home for Christmas break. One of the girls, named Patty, went Christmas caroling around the neighborhood, and when she came home she was tired and lay down to rest on the couch. Later, her mother could not waken her. A day or so later, Jesus came for her. When the students came back after Christmas, there was Patty’s empty desk. What an Advent lesson that was!
Advent this year has been most adventurous for me as I was taken to the Emergency room on the first Sunday, and have had a lot of unexpected time to spend with the Lord exploring His coming in my life while I recuperate.
The Lord comes to us in so many ways! I find Him in the loving care and concern that has been given to me from the nurses, doctors, Sisters in my community, the students and school personnel, and my family. I learn from them all how to be more compassionate and thoughtful of others. And I am overcome with gratitude.
          Yes, Jesus is Coming! Are we ready for Him at any time? As in the book of Revelation,  The Spirit and the bride say, “Come!” And let the one who hears say, “Come!” Let the one who is thirsty come; and let the one who wishes take the free gift of the water of life.  He who testifies to these things says, “Yes, I am coming soon.”
Amen. Come, Lord Jesus.
Sr. Mary Carol Helllmann, OSB


  1. Thank you for sharing your stories of experiencing mortality. I too have found this awareness an awesome teacher for living in the present.

  2. thank you sister for reminding me of this powerful prayer, Come Lord Jesus! amen the loss of your beloved brother, the sudden loss of a friend, the griefs that come bring me to say Come Lord Jesus among us that we may be strong for each other, and be closer together in love and faith. Peoples who are divided or far apart, for whatever reason -- history or geography. "Now may our God and Father himself and our Lord Jesus clear the way for us to come to you. May the Lord make your love increase and overflow for each other and for everyone else, just as ours does for you. May he strengthen your hearts so that you will be blameless and holy in the presence of our God and Father when our Lord Jesus comes with all his holy ones." May the Lord Jesus strengthen your recovery and be present in joy in the celebration of Christmas for OSB, amen. God bless OSB amen.

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  4. You have a way of really embracing the message of Advent.

  5. We have entered into the "age to come" foretold by Jesus in Mark 10:30.