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Advent Peace

It's advent - the season of year when Christians await the coming of Jesus anew in our hearts, in remembrance of his birth over 2,000 years ago. To celebrate, we light a candle each Sunday - one for hope, one for peace, one for joy, and one for love. This Sunday, my church asked me to light the candle of peace. As someone called to be a peacemaker, I was grateful for the chance to share some of the stories and journies of peace I have made over the years. Let me share the highlights with you.

Peace is God's gift, but we must open our hearts

It was 10:50 PM when I returned to the monastery on my first night in Rome. Tired after over 36 hours of flights, buses, and a leisurely evening out, yet energised by the adrenalin of starting a month-long adventure, I shared the highlights of my evening with Sister Leopoldina, the elderly nun serving at the desk until 11PM. Diminutive in stature, but gigantic in spirit, we picked up the threads of our earlier conversation.

September Peace Quest - On My Way

I’m on my way to Rome, the first stop on my September peace quest. I’ll spend the night in a monastery, then the next two nights in Assisi, to centre myself for the rest of the trip.

Walls are the metaphor for this trip. I’ve been fascinated by walls since my trip to Israel and Palestine last November. The separation wall made a big impact on me, and I’ve been dreaming of ways to digitally erase it, scale it, write on it, and project it - symbols of a united future, plus creative advocacy to get there. After my sojourn in Assisi, I’ll go to Geneva to seek partners to make these dreams a reality.

Walking on Water

We sang Hillsong’s Oceans (Where Feet may fail) on Sunday; it’s a beautiful song about following Jesus onto the water. It alludes to the Biblical passage in which Jesus walked past the disciples on a stormy sea, while they struggled against the wind in a boat (Matthew 14, Mark 6, John 6).

Envisioning the scene, Jesus is on the lake; I’m on the shore. If I’m going to follow Jesus, I’m going to have to get my feet wet.

Maundy Thursday

It’s Maundy Thursday, or Holy Thursday in the Christian calendar — the beginning of Easter, our most sacred holy day. The whole weekend is devoted to remembering Jesus’ teaching, betrayal, death, and resurrection. From Thursday to Saturday, we will keep vigil, reading Biblical records of this weekend’s events over two millennia ago. We will pray, fast, repent, and remember. We do this to reground ourselves in God’s word, God’s love, God’s sacrifice for us, and the sacrifice that God requests of us.

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