Nightly Prayer: Love
In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.
Leader: God our Father, in this final week of Advent, we ask You to fill our hearts, home, and family with Your great love.
All: Come, Lord Jesus.
Family member lights the four advent candles.
Leader: Lord, help us to love You above all things. Help us to love our siblings, family members, friends, classmates, and neighbors. Help us to love those who are the most difficult to love. Let us love all others as we love ourselves — with joy, peace, mercy, and generosity.
All: Come, Lord Jesus.
Leader: In these final days of Advent, we look back on the many ways we have prepared for Your coming. At times we have been fervent and sincere; at other times we have been apathetic and slow. We ask now for You to cover our imperfections with Your love, readying our heart for Jesus’ birth.
All: Fill our hearts with hope, peace, joy, and love! Amen.
The fourth candle is purple and is the “Candle of Love”. It reminds us that God so loved the world (i.e. you, us, … even that difficult friend or relative!) that He gave His only Son to us so we could have abundant life.
- What is love? (Allow family members to linger on the complicated-though-simple question. Resist offering easy answers!)
- How does the birth of Jesus demonstrate God’s love?
- What are ways that we can “love our neighbors as ourselves”?
- Have you ever been able to demonstrate love to a person who seems “unlovable”? Is love a feeling? An action? An attitude? A choice?
- When the Nicene Creed is prayed at Mass, we bow during the phrase, “by the power of the Holy Spirit he was born of the Virgin Mary, and became man.” Why? (Hint: consider this week’s virtue!)
From the Catechism: Love [charity] is the theological virtue by which we love God above all things for his own sake, and our neighbor as ourselves for the love of God. (CCC, Glossary. See also CCC 1822-1829)
Advent Beyond the Wreath: Daily Scripture Cards
- Cut the scripture cards apart on the dotted lines, using each card as dated.
- Place the cards in fun locations where your child(ren) can discover and read them on their own. Possible places: in their lunchbox, on their pillow, or at their place at the kitchen table.
- Optional: leave a small piece of candy or treat with each verse card.
- Circle back to the daily verses during family meal/prayer time. Let conversation develop naturally — some verses may be of particular interest to you or your child, and others not. Remember to consider the verses in context (who said it, when was it said, what story or thoughts surround the verse). Don’t be afraid to look the verses up in your Bible!
Keep Praying through the Entire Christmas Season!
The Ascension Family Life Ministry encourages you to celebrate the entire season of Christmas! Click the link for more ways to celebrate!