This is from our “Catechesis of the Good Shepherd Explained” series written for our December 2019 Parish Newsletter by Laura Nelson, Coordinator of Children’s Catechesis.
Sometimes you have to wait for the thing you really, really want. Maybe it’s the dream job you’ve been working toward. Maybe it’s finally being tall enough to ride the big roller coaster. Maybe it’s finding Mr. or Miss Right and starting your fairy-tale life together. Or maybe you’re waiting for something even more life-changing…maybe you’re waiting to know God in a deeper, more profound way.
In the Atrium, we spend a lot of time teaching the children to wait. The space is designed to engage the child in all sorts of work that draws them closer to Jesus. But, there’s only one set of each item. This means that sometimes we have to wait our turn while another child uses the materials.
At first, the children struggle with learning to wait. But as they grow in their waiting skills, they begin to grow in patience, in hope, and in trust that they will, indeed, get their turn. And, sometimes, the waiting makes them look forward to their turn even more.
At this time of year, the whole Church and the people of God are waiting in great anticipation. But, we’re not waiting for a turn to work with cool materials. We’re waiting for the most anticipated event in all of history, the birth of Jesus at Christmas. During Advent, the children in the Atrium wait along with the whole Church for the coming of Christ. We ponder the prophecies of Isaiah that tell us so much about who this Messiah will be. Wonderful Counselor. Mighty God. Everlasting Father. Prince of Peace! We see the light on the Advent wreath grow brighter and brighter as each week passes. And we grow in patience, in trust, in hope, and in joy because we have learned to wait and we know that waiting for good things is always worth it.