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Three New Advent Devotionals for 2020

Wake up and smell the pumpkin spice…. it’s the middle of October and we have only six weeks until Advent starts!  

This means it’s time to choose and order an Advent Devotional. Don’t be like me – thinking about it and waiting until you suddenly realize that Advent is the next Sunday.  

If ever there was a year to sit with the Word, to Be Still and Know, to ponder and hold everything in your heart, it is 2020.  This year has driven so many of us to our knees in prayer and total surrender to God. 

Ave Maria Press offers three new Advent devotionals for your consideration and all three have their merits. There’s one for someone super short on time, one who has a little more opportunity to sit with it, and one that is perfect for the teens in your family. 

MESSAGES OF JOY for Advent and Christmas 2020 by Michael White and Tom Corcoran

If you’ve never done an Advent devotional and find yourself thinking about it, this is a great opportunity to try one. It’s designed to be a three-minute devotional which means you can’t argue that you don’t have time to read it once a day. 

Three minutes – while you wait in a car line to pick up the kids. Three minutes – when you sit at that ridiculously long traffic light on your commute. This book is the perfect size to toss in your purse or keep in the center console of the car for those three-minutes of opportunity. It’s also available as an eBook if you prefer the electronic version. 

After a very brief introduction, each day offers a scripture verse, short reflection on joy, and a simple prayer prompt to hold in your heart for the moment or throughout the day. (Your choice.)  It starts on the first Sunday of Advent (Nov 29) and goes all the way through the Epiphany on Jan 6 so you can keep Christmas in your heart throughout the season.

You’ll be pleasantly surprised how spending a short three minutes in guided prayer can change your day for the better. 

THE LIVING GOSPEL: Daily Devotions for Advent 2020 by Charles Paolino

If you’re looking for a little deeper spiritual guidance, consider The Living Gospel daily devotionals. This one offers two-page devotionals that invite you to prepare your heart, pray a scripture verse, then read from the Gospel – listening to one or two verses specifically. After a practical reflection, it calls you to an action for the day and closes in prayer. 

This devotional is perfect if you're looking to spend 5-10 minutes in prayer, perhaps over a quiet cup of coffee before the whole house is awake or on your lunch break at work. The same size as the first book – small enough to tote around easily – it only covers the 2020 Advent period, starting on Nov 29 and ending with Christmas Day. Also available in eBook.

ADVENT AND CHRISTMAS: One Day at a Time for Catholic Teens by Katie Prejean McGrady and Tommy McGrady

I love this book! I’ve been a catechist in our parish Life Teen program for seven years and I want to give this book to every teen in our program. Let me tell you why I love it. It’s versatile, meaning that you can read each day in 3-5 minutes as a beginner or you can dive deeper if you're ready to really invest in your relationship with God. In a positive, hopeful manner, it addresses topics that are relative and important to teens (and really to all of us) such as coping with stress, insecurity, our relationships with others, and finding a sense of peace in this noisy world.  There is an introduction, a weekly challenge, and each day starts with a short reflection before suggesting how to "Grow Your Soul" and inviting you to be ambitious in your spiritual journey before ending in prayer.

This small book – slightly larger than the others – will still easily fit in a car or backpack. Unlike the others, it’s not dated specifically to 2020, allowing teens of all ages the opportunity to grow with it year over year. It covers all four weeks of Advent and through the Christmas season to the Epiphany on Jan 6.  

The Advent season of preparing for Christ to be our light in the darkest moment while focusing on Hope and Faith, Peace, Joy, and Love is comforting. For us to tenderly receive Him in our hearts as an infant come to save the world reminds us that life continues, and God loves us so much He sent us His Son. It is also a time to Be watchful! Be alert! to the promise of His second coming. 

Choose an Advent Devotional to center your mind and heart on the coming of Jesus and grow in His love and kindness.

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