Today those of us in the Northern hemisphere celebrate the "return" of the light; we will now enjoy a few extra minutes each day. I've been spending time this week with some of our Sisters who lived many years in Alaska, where winters were spent in almost perpetual dusk. Hearing their stories, I've realized today is really a cause for celebration for our Northern neighbors!
Although I welcome the returning light, I've tried to make a point this Advent of reverencing darkness. So often we focus only on the light, hoping and waiting for its coming. We see darkness only as the absence of light, and we forget that Holy Mystery often resides in the sacred darkness. In fact, I bet Mary felt very "in the dark" in today's Gospel reading, when invited by the angel to take on an unthinkable role. We have the advantage of knowing how it all turned out for her, but Mary simply had to trust. And her trust-filled yes, offered in darkness, would eventually birth Light into the world.
I take it as an invitation to trust more deeply, whether I find myself in the dark or not. When have you encountered Holy Mystery in the darkness and in the light? How are you being invited to trust?
Sr. Christin Tomy
St. Louis, MO