In this third week of Advent we should be building our expectations for new joy this holy season. And how exactly do we prepare for “new joy” at this time of year? Perhaps we are looking in the wrong places or perhaps we are focused too much on self. Were we to step aside from the maelstrom of the commercial, we might just find someone who desperately needs our help. The person could be of any age, physically sick or emotionally sick. What usually makes such a person desperate is the lack of human warmth – the warmth of friendship.
In our assigned scripture for this week we find an excellent example of human friendship.
“….Mary set out, proceeding in haste into the hill country to a town of Judah, where she entered Zechariah’s house and greeted Elizabeth. When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the baby leapt in her womb.” Luke 1:39-41
We know that Mary remained with her cousin Elizabeth about three months before returning home. Our own attitude of help for the sick and suffering alcoholic still in his or her addiction should likewise move us to reach out and help in any way we can.

Having done so, we can definitely say with Mary: My being proclaims the greatness of the Lord and my spirit finds joy in God my savior. This is how we will find new joy as we approach Christmas this year.

These thoughts offered by Brother Richard Hittle, S.J., a grateful 1980 graduate of Guest House and an employee since 2004.