Advent and Anticipation

As we enter the season of Advent, think back to your early childhood and what Advent meant to you.  For most, it was a season of nervous anticipation.  Had I been good enough for St. Nicholas to fill my stocking with toys and treats?  Would my hopes and wishes be fulfilled under the tree on Christmas morning?

As we grew older and our understanding matured, Advent became a time of preparation, of fasting and penance; yet it was still a season of great anticipation and hope.  We looked forward to the birth of our Lord, to the end of fasting and to the opportunity to celebrate the joyous Christmas season with family and friends.

Now that I am “middle-aged” and a husband and father, I have developed a new and expanded notion of Advent.  Of course, I still associate Advent with the pre-Christmas season and with readying myself for the coming of our Lord on Christmas day; but I also now realize that the season of anticipation is not limited to just three or four weeks at the beginning of each liturgical year.

When we are in a proper frame of mind we realize that every moment of our earthly existence should be one of nervous anticipation.  Have we been good enough to maintain the gift of God’s grace? Will we be counted among the saints, gazing eternally upon the face of God? Each and every day of our lives we have something beautiful to anticipate, whether it’s the life of the world to come or simply the advent of some new experience, adventure or discovery

For my wife and I, this state of perpetual anticipation has played out in the excitement leading up to our marriage day, the hope and joy preceding the birth of each of our ten children, and the daily delight of witnessing our children grow physically and spiritually.

For the better part of a decade, homeschooling had been the unrivaled adventure for our family.  But more recently we discovered, in Chelsea Academy, a new and amazing source of anticipation, hope and adventure.  From the nervous excitement of each new day as the children board the bus to school, to the ever-increasing circle of friends that we meet at the picnics, parent nights, performances and outdoor adventures that are a daily part of life at Chelsea.  We and our children are always eagerly awaiting the next opportunity to interact with the Chelsea community.

Each new year at Chelsea brings our family new opportunities, new challenges, and new milestones. Chelsea constantly lives up to its mission of providing an “education which is, by its very nature, an adventure;” a continuous adventure for our entire family.

As a “Chelsea Family” our lives are enriched in ways we could not have expected.  We consider ourselves blessed and we wait, each day, in joyful anticipation of the next adventure that Chelsea Academy promises to bring our way.

We pray that during this Advent season each member of the Chelsea community experiences the joyful hope of Christmas and the continuous anticipation of the many blessings that Christ promises us each and every day.

Post by: J. Douglas McCarthy, Founding Partner of McCarthy & Akers, PLC and Chelsea Board Chairman

 

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