"A Real Advent":
According to St. Benedict of Nursia the Christian life should be a continuous Lent. And according to Sts. Wal-Mart, Target, and Starbucks the fall should be a continuous Christmas . . ."The Ultimate Guide to Making a Jesse Tree": This site really does have a bunch of great ideas for making Jesse Trees - hat tip to Lent & Beyond for the link!
"Come and See" - this is a lovely free printable coloring sheet of a Nativity scene for kids.
"Mere Fidelity: Teens and Sexting": I listened to this podcast the other night and it was brilliant. Sobering and heartening at the same time. I think I want to listen to it again, because I so appreciated the podcasters very Christian approach to our present culture.
"In Which I Wonder as I Wander":
I've lately been discouraged by how slowly God works out his will. The evil, the rebellion is so huge. The slaughter of people right and left, the corruption, the illnesses that seem to suddenly carry people away. I wander around the church kitchen and beg God to just do something, anything. But especially for him to do something visible, something that rights all the wrongs in a grand and obvious solution. And then I stand and wait because I don't know what else to do. And then, in the waiting, it becomes clear that God is doing something, has done something, but not the thing I wanted him to do. The seismic movements and changes he is effecting are in the hearts of individual people, me included, and they can't be seen. In the swirling smoke and violence of the world, he buds and produces fruit, in secret, hidden before the tabernacle of the Lord . . .