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SSpS-SVD-SSpSAP Joint Venture for Immigration
Prayers and Reflections for Advent and Christmas

The Joint Venture Immigration Committee
was formed over four years ago to promote Immigration Reform in the United States. It is a Joint Committee of the Holy Spirit Missionary Sisters, Society of the Divine Word Priests and Brothers, the Holy Spirit Adoration Sisters and Lay Men and Woman. Our work includes prayer, education and advocacy to work for and bring about Comprehensive Immigration Reform as soon as possible. Please help us to make it possible this year or next year in the United States Congress.

We ask you to Pray for the passage of Comprehensive Immigration Reform that is just and fair for our Immigrant Brothers and Sisters every week. Some suggested possibilities or resources for you are as follows:

  1. Pray the Rosary once a week for Immigration Reform that is just and fair.
  2. Try to hear the story of an Immigrant who lives and prays with the Parish you are serving in, ministering in or praying in. Ask your fellow Parishioners to get to know Immigrants in your Parish Family. What are you or can you do to make Immigrants and their Families feel welcome in your Faith Community? Have you heard their stories? Have you ever attended or celebrated the cultural events of the Immigrants in your Faith Community?
  3. A Petition placed in the Prayer of the Faithful/General Intercessions on Sunday connected to the Reading of the day at least once a month for Immigrants and Immigration Reform. This can also be done every week at Parish weekday Masses.
    Sample: Let us pray for Immigration Reform in our nation. That we may work to renew the soul of America and help our nation live up to its beautiful promise of equality and dignity for all people.
    Sample: We pray for all the children whose parents have been deported. May these families be reunited one day through Immigration Reform that is just and fair.
  4. The Advent Season prepares us for the full realization of the Kingdom of God, and the celebration of Christmas.

Possible Homily/Reflection possibilities during Advent:

Advent is about the arrival of and preparation for the “Kingdom of God” where all people are welcome. Look at the Scriptures for the First and Second Sunday of Advent to help you proclaim that we, Christ disciples, are about building the Kingdom of God and welcoming all nations and peoples to God’s House.

December 1, 2013

Isaiah 2:1-5: All nations shall stream toward it; many peoples shall come and say:
“Come, let us climb the LORD’s mountain, to the house of the God of Jacob,
that he may instruct us in his ways, and we may walk in his paths.”
For from Zion shall go forth instruction and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem.
He shall judge between the nations, and impose terms on many peoples.
They shall beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks;
one nation shall not raise the sword against another, nor shall they train for war again.
O house of Jacob, come, let us walk in the light of the Lord!

Isaiah Reflection: All nations, all peoples, all creatures are welcome in God’s Kingdom. Are we a welcoming people/a welcoming faith community to all people, especially our Immigrant Brothers and Sisters? Do we live with “a spirit of wisdom and of understanding, a spirit of counsel and of strength, a spirit of knowledge and of fear of the LORD”?

December 8, 2013

Isaiah 11: 1-10: On that day, a shoot shall sprout from the stump of Jesse, and from his roots a bud shall blossom. The spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him: a spirit of wisdom and of understanding, a spirit of counsel and of strength, a spirit of knowledge and of fear of the LORD, and his delight shall be the fear of the LORD. Not by appearance shall he judge, nor by hearsay shall he decide, but he shall judge the poor with justice, and decide aright for the land’s afflicted. He shall strike the ruthless with the rod of his mouth, and with the breath of his lips he shall slay the wicked. Justice shall be the band around his waist, and faithfulness a belt upon his hips. Then the wolf shall be a guest of the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid; the calf and the young lion shall browse together, with a little child to guide them. The cow and the bear shall be neighbors, together their young shall rest; the lion shall eat hay like the ox. The baby shall play by the cobra’s den, and the child lay his hand on the adder’s lair. There shall be no harm or ruin on all my holy mountain; for the earth shall be filled with knowledge of the LORD, as water covers the sea. On that day, the root of Jesse, set up as a signal for the nations, the Gentiles shall seek out, for his dwelling shall be glorious.

Christmas Season / December 25, 2013

Matthew 1: 1-25: The Vigil Mass of Christmas is the story of Jesus family tree, his genealogy, from one generation to the next. It is the story of a family, its history of joys and sorrows, challenges and moments of new life and death.

Luke 2: 1-14: Christmas Midnight Mass: Peace, Joy, the birth of a new child in a young family while they are away from their home with no place to stay. And, this new family was welcomed by shepherds first. It could be an Immigrant’s story.

John 1: 1-5, 9-14: Christmas Mass during the day, Jesus is the “Word made Flesh” who dwells among us. We all are invited to give witness to the “Word”. We are part of the Word and we listen to it and give reality to it in our lives.

December 28-29, 2013, Feast of the Holy Family:

Colossians 3:12-21: “Put on, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, heartfelt compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience, bearing with one another and forgiving one another, if one has a grievance against another; as the Lord has forgiven you, so must you also do. And over all these put on love, that is, the bond of perfection. And let the peace of Christ control your hearts, the peace into which you were also called in one body. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly…

Reflection: Love challenges us, inspires us and encourages us to do the following for all our Brothers and Sisters no matter whom they are or where they are from…see Colossians

Matthew 2: 13-15, 19-23: When the magi had departed, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream and said, “Rise, take the child and his mother, flee to Egypt, and stay there until I tell you. Herod is going to search for the child to destroy him.” Joseph rose and took the child and his mother by night and departed for Egypt. He stayed there until the death of Herod, that what the Lord had said through the prophet might be fulfilled, Out of Egypt I called my son.
When Herod had died, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared in a dream to Joseph in Egypt and said, “Rise, take the child and his mother and go to the land of Israel, for those who sought the child’s life are dead.” He rose, took the child and his mother, and went to the land of Israel. But when he heard that Archelaus was ruling over Judea in place of his father Herod, he was afraid to go back there. And because he had been warned in a dream, he departed for the region of Galilee. He went and dwelt in a town called Nazareth, so that what had been spoken through the prophets might be fulfilled, He shall be called a Nazorean.

Reflection: A young family feels threatened and has to leave its home country and move to another. Immigrants come here who are threatened and they are sometimes forced to find and make a new life in a strange land. Sometimes they are there because they have to support their families back home who are poor and in need. It is really the story of all Immigrants.