Thoughts on Advent


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Traditionally, at the beginning of Advent at the latest, our churches and more and more "aid organizations" draw our citizens' attention to the fact that things are not as orderly and civilized everywhere in the world as they are here in Germany.

At the latest since our media have dared to look beyond their own noses, which is certainly related to the increasing availability of the Internet for all citizens, we also know from other sources that our world is not as ok everywhere as it is here.

And since 2015 at the latest, we all know that there are very, very many people outside of Germany whose goal is to gain a foothold here or at least to get their share of our "prosperity".

But at the latest since the increasing occurrence of COVID-19, including us, we have to acknowledge that the world is no longer as orderly as we were "always" used to it, and how it is continue to hope and promise for many new immigrants.

I'm not talking about the increasing hordes of drinkers, beggars and peddlers who like to crowd around our churches and in the pedestrian zones, or about the increasing littering of our cities, villages and countryside.

I'm not talking about state governments fighting over the distribution of vaccine doses and ventilators, or fellow citizens fighting over toilet paper rolls, but about the really remarkable changes in our society.

Because in the meantime, West German military planes are flying sick people through the entire republic, Bundeswehr soldiers are helping out in hospitals and no city administration would be unthinkable without them, while far too many of our fellow citizens continue to insist on their “right to pleasure”, their “right to ignorance” or even insist on their right to simply be anti-social idiots.

Every society is supported by its top performers in the truest sense of the word, who can always drag along a certain number of “very special” fellow citizens and, if things are “going well”, also like to contribute with donations and other help to ensure that others Less successful regions and areas of the world, such as Saarland or Berlin, can be "kept alive".

Unfortunately, many of these top performers no longer know how they keep their companies, businesses or businesses alive, where they get the funds from to even pay their taxes, how they ever halfway reduce the accumulated overtime or vacation days or how many Children, schoolchildren, the sick or the elderly can they still take care of?

Advent is actually a time to "slow down" a bit and then use this free time to think about yourself, your loved ones and the rest of the world.

Those fellow citizens who find or are given the opportunity to do so can consider themselves lucky.

If you are one of those lucky people yourself, then I think it would be good to consider how we can help or even give a little support to those people who are in a less comfortable situation.

And just as a single euro donation to “Brot für die Welt” can make a big difference, so can the small piece of rubbish that ends up in the rubbish bin rather than on the street, or the well-fitting face mask or sufficient distance from the neighbors, or even a refreshed vaccination, such as against the flu or against COVID-19, can all do great things for us.

And if you meet a fellow citizen during this Advent season who doesn't have time to reflect because of all the work, then simply saying thank you to them would be a small but certainly very nice gesture.

With this in mind, I wish us all a contemplative Advent season and hope that as many of us as possible will get through the coming year unscathed.

"You have to set the sails in the endless wind, only then will we feel what kind of journey we are capable of."

Alfred Delp, The Law of Liberty, Epiphany 1945

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