Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Advent Preparation

Is it an oxymoron, or just a redundancy? Never mind, it's time to prepare for the preparatory season of Advent. In case you've forgotten, Advent is a season of fasting and penance, just like Lent, except not so much in a penitential way as in a reflective, preparatory way, helped along by Mass readings on the subject of the Apocalypse. But since there aren't any regulations on the subject anymore, most of us modern Catholics observe Advent through the grotesquely penitential trips through malls in search of Christmas decorations and gifts, and through vows to fast at least enough to make up for the pounds gained at Thanksgiving.

Anyhow, to get us started off, here's Godspy's John Zmirak with a list of Lenten resolutions for mediocre Catholics; easily adaptable into mediocre Advent resolutions. My favorite:

7. Writing single-spaced letters of complaint to: a) The local bishop, b) The Vatican, or c) The Catholic League for Civil and Religious Rights.

This and other delights in Zmirak's book The Bad Catholic's Guide to Good Living, available from Amazon and perfect as a Christmas gift (see? more Advent prep!) for that hard-t0-shop-for cradle Catholic on your list. (Note the adjective; this may not be a book for the convert who would prefer not to think about the eating of relics and other interesting tidbits of Catholicism through the ages.)

Incidentally, I don't have a copy yet myself, hint hint....


Blogger sophia said...

Our Orthodox Christmas fast started today and won't end until Christmas. It's a fast from meat and dairy, although we can have fish on lots of those days according to the church calendar because this is more of a celabratory fast, unlike lent. Celebratory about oxymoron. Anyway, the money we save from not eating meat is supposed to go to the poor during this season. However, since I am a couponer, I always seem to end up spending more money during the fast because of buying more fresh veggies and fruit (well, I admit, I buy for convenience, too, which is more expensive) So I spent more this morning to prepare for the first week of the fast than I am used to spending for two weeks. HMMM.... I do let the kids have milk, cheese, some eggs, but we try not to have sweets ie milk chocolate, cookies, cakes with eggs. People at church have found ways to get around it by eating dark chocolate or recipes for cookies and cakes without eggs during the fast. It's up to the individual, but we find that going with a more bland diet during this time really adds to our excitement of Christmas day arriving! Now, if I can just find a way of doing it more cheaply!

6:02 AM  

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