Mount of Olives panorama

Mount of Olives panorama
A panoramic view of the Mount of Olives

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Second Sunday of Advent: Love

For the Second Sunday of Advent
2012 date: December 9; originally posted for 2011, December 4
Link to the Mormon Times article in The Deseret News; see also Good Tidings of Great Joy, 62-63.

The theme of the second Sunday of Advent is dedicated to Love.  Love permeates every aspect of the Christmas story: God so loved the world that he send his Only Begotten Son, and Jehovah so loved us that he deigned to become the Babe of Bethlehem—and later, as the Man Jesus, to suffer, die, and rise again for us.  Christmastime is a season when love of God and of our fellowmen and women fills us all, but the real challenge is to continue feeling and showing that love when Christmas is over so that it fills the entire year.

After relighting the previous week’s candle, we then light a second purple candle and read passages of scripture that reflect this love, then and now.  Such passages include the following:
  • Isaiah 49:13–16
  • 1 Nephi 11:14–22
  • John 3:16–17
  • Moroni 7:47–48
Samuel and Rachel making Christmas cookies
Discussions of the week’s theme can then be connected directly to the Christmas story by reading the account of the Annunciation to Mary from Luke 1:26–38.  The beautiful story of the young Mary’s meek acceptance of the message given her by Gabriel reflects the loving devotion that we should all feel towards God.

In case you missed earlier posts in this series:
Here is my online clip from the Church of the Annunciation in Nazareth:

"An Angel Foretells Christ's Birth to Mary," The Life of Christ Bible Videos.

There are several familiar carols that sing of the love that we have for God and Jesus.  Some of my favorites are “O Come, All Ye Faithful,” which bids us in each chorus to “come and adore him,” and “O Holy Night,” which reminds us that he taught us to love one another even as it calls upon us to praise his holy name.

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